APS announced the decision just after 5:00 this morning. Classes are canceled but school offices are to remain open, with essential employees still expected to report to work.
The federal government, meanwhile, is closed this morning, as are Arlington County courts. But Arlington County government will be open, with an unscheduled leave and telework policy for employees. ART buses will operate on a limited schedule.
Snow in Arlington began later than areas west and north, owing to temperatures just above freezing, but all parts of the county appear to have switched from rain to snow by 7:15 a.m.
The National Weather Service has issued a Winter Storm Warning for Arlington and the D.C. region.
Up to 6 inches of snow are forecast for the area. From NWS:
… WINTER STORM WARNING IN EFFECT FROM 3 AM TO 2 PM EST TUESDAY…
THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN BALTIMORE MD/WASHINGTON HAS ISSUED A WINTER STORM WARNING FOR SNOW… WHICH IS IN EFFECT FROM 3 AM TO 2 PM EST TUESDAY. THE WINTER WEATHER ADVISORY IS NO LONGER IN EFFECT.
* PRECIPITATION TYPE… SNOW… HEAVY AT TIMES. PRECIPITATION MAY START AS A PERIOD OF SNOW AND SLEET BEFORE DAWN CHANGING TO ALL SNOW AFTER DAYBREAK.
* ACCUMULATIONS… 3 TO 6 INCHES.
* TIMING… AROUND DAYBREAK TUESDAY LASTING THROUGH EARLY TUESDAY AFTERNOON… INCLUDING THE TUESDAY MORNING RUSH HOUR.
* TEMPERATURES… UPPER 20S TO LOWER 30S.
* WINDS… NORTHWEST 5 TO 10 MPH.
* IMPACTS… HAZARDOUS TRAVEL CONDITIONS ARE EXPECTED FROM HEAVY SNOW. THE SNOW WILL IMPACT THE MORNING RUSH TUESDAY WITH THE POTENTIAL FOR ACCUMULATION RATES OF 1-2 INCHES PER HOUR.
A WINTER STORM WARNING FOR SNOW MEANS SEVERE WINTER WEATHER CONDITIONS ARE EXPECTED. SIGNIFICANT AMOUNTS OF SNOW WILL MAKE TRAVEL HAZARDOUS.
The effects of Sunday’s winter storm continue to be felt as the county braces for another Tuesday morning.
Reports of downed trees, branches and electrical wires, as well as several car accidents, have continued to come in during the day (Monday).
As of late this afternoon, N. Glebe Road was still closed between Military Road and Chain Bridge Road due to a large downed tree. As of 4:15 p.m., 788 Dominion Power customers in Arlington remained without power.
Two pedestrians were struck by vehicles in shopping center parking lots in Arlington today, suffering non-life-threatening injuries. It’s unclear if accumulated snow and ice played a role in the accidents.
Arlington Office of Emergency Management spokesman John Crawford said the storm’s impact could have been worse had it not arrived on a Sunday and had residents not been alerted by forecasters well ahead of time. Closing schools and governments allowing “liberal leave” prevented further safety issues today, Crawford said.
“I think our roadways were fairly clear” for the morning commute, he said.
The county may not be so lucky for the winter storm that could arrive Tuesday morning, however. The National Weather Service has downgraded what was a Winter Storm Watch to a Winter Weather Advisory at 2:30 p.m., but it’s still calling for 3-5 inches of snow between 3:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m.
NWS is warning of a “hazardous morning commute,” saying the heaviest snow will be falling during the morning rush hour, while OEM is also preparing for the possibility that the snow could pose more problems for the evening rush hour.
“We’re tracking and watching the storm very closely to see if it’s going to have a significant impact on Arlington,” Crawford said.
“Commuters should be well aware of conditions tomorrow,” he said. “Coming home could be very sloppy if the temperature remains below freezing. If you absolutely have to drive, just be smart, be cautious and be prepared.”
Crawford remembered “Carmageddon,” the last major winter storm that impacted the area during a rush hour commute. Drivers were stuck on the George Washington Parkway and I-66 for several hours on Jan. 26, 2011. There were more than 100 calls for disabled vehicles throughout Northern Virginia.
The Washington Post’s Capital Weather Gang is still unsure about the true nature of the coming storm, calling it “tricky to predict.” It could be less than 2 inches or more than 5 inches of snow, CWG forecasters say.
The Virginia Department of Transportation is urging drivers to check weather conditions before leaving for their morning commutes tomorrow morning, and to “limit travel or use caution.” More than 1,200 VDOT trucks and plows will be out by 4 a.m. to try to clear roadways, the department said.
The $1 million Walter Reed “Super Stop” on Columbia Pike had its first big test of handing inclement winter weather over the weekend.
By at least one measure, it failed.
Part of the Super Stop’s bench was covered by snow Sunday, as a tweet from Arlington County Board candidate Peter Fallon showed.
“No, it doesn’t keep the snow out. ,” Fallon tweeted.
Photo via Twitter
The National Weather Service has issued a Winter Storm Watch, saying that 5 or more inches of snow is possible Tuesday. Other forecasters say the snow total is likely to be lower — perhaps 2-3 inches.
From the National Weather Service:
…WINTER STORM WATCH IN EFFECT FROM LATE TONIGHT THROUGH TUESDAY AFTERNOON…
THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN BALTIMORE MD/WASHINGTON HAS ISSUED A WINTER STORM WATCH…WHICH IS IN EFFECT FROM LATE TONIGHT THROUGH TUESDAY AFTERNOON.
* PRECIPITATION TYPE…POTENTIAL FOR HEAVY SNOW. THE PRECIPITATION MAY START AS A PERIOD OF SLEET…ESPECIALLY SOUTH OF INTERSTATE 66 IN VIRGINIA…THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA…AND U.S. ROUTE 50 IN MARYLAND.
* ACCUMULATIONS…POTENTIAL FOR FIVE INCHES OR MORE OF SNOW.
* TIMING…NEAR DAWN TUESDAY THROUGH EARLY TUESDAY AFTERNOON…INCLUDING THE TUESDAY MORNING RUSH HOUR.
* TEMPERATURES…UPPER 20S AND LOWER 30S.
* WINDS…NORTH 5 TO 10 MPH.
* IMPACTS…HAZARDOUS TRAVEL CONDITIONS ARE PROBABLE DUE TO ACCUMULATING SNOW…WHICH WILL CAUSE ADVERSE TRAVELING CONDITIONS. THE SNOW WILL LIKELY IMPACT THE MORNING RUSH TUESDAY WITH THE POTENTIAL FOR ACCUMULATION RATES OF 1-2 INCHES PER HOUR FOR A TWO-TO-FOUR HOUR PERIOD FROM DAYBREAK TO MID-TO-LATE MORNING.
A WINTER STORM WATCH MEANS THERE IS A POTENTIAL FOR SIGNIFICANT SNOW…SLEET…OR ICE ACCUMULATIONS THAT MAY IMPACT TRAVEL.
Update at 9:30 a.m. – Glebe Road is shut down between Military Road and Chain Bridge Road due to a downed tree.
Update at 9:15 a.m. — The number of Dominion customers without power in Arlington has climbed to nearly 1,700. Meanwhile, Washington Boulevard is closed at Powhatan Street due to a downed tree and live power lines.
Arlington Public Schools are closed today due to icy conditions on the roads.
School administrative offices are open for APS employees, but with a liberal leave policy. Arlington joins Alexandria, Fairfax and Loudoun counties in closing for the day due to the ice storm.
The federal government, meanwhile, is open under a two hour delay. Federal employees also have the option for unscheduled leave or telework.
Arlington County government offices and courts are open, with an unscheduled leave and telework option. ART buses are operating normally, as are Metro buses and Metrorail.
“Please use caution while traveling through the Metrorail system as wet platforms and escalators can be slippery,” said WMATA, in a tweet.
Local roads are reported to be slick, but main arteries have been treated with salt and are simply wet.
“Arlington County roads are passable, but drivers are urged to use caution,” according to an Arlington Alert email.
The ice coating has brought down tree branches, which have in turn knocked down some power lines. As of 7:15 a.m. about 1,100 Dominion customers in Arlington were without power.
Flickr photo by fcreativ
The area is under a Winter Storm Warning through 10:00 a.m. Monday as forecasters call for a quarter inch of ice. Via Twitter, readers have reported slick roads, especially on neighborhood streets. A Domino’s delivery driver in south Arlington told ARLnow.com that side streets were “very bad,” and that another driver had been involved in an accident. Bridges were also said to be particularly icy.
VDOT, which is responsible for maintaining highways and certain major roads in Arlington, says Monday’s morning rush hour could be impacted by the slick conditions.
“Crews are plowing as well as heavily salting roads and will continue to do so through tomorrow morning’s rush hours,” VDOT said in a tweet.
Arlington canceled evening activities and closed all schools and government buildings at 6:00 p.m. tonight (Sunday).
Freezing temperatures might have been responsible for a water main break near Lee Highway. The water main break happened at 20th Road N. and N. Woodstock Street.
Fairfax and Loudoun County schools will be closed Monday. So far, there has been no announcement from Arlington Public Schools.
Flickr pool photo by J. Sonder
The National Weather Service has issued a Winter Storm Watch for the greater D.C. region.
Forecasters say 1-2 inches of snow and a quarter inch of ice accumulation is likely.
…WINTER STORM WATCH IN EFFECT FROM SUNDAY MORNING THROUGH MONDAY MORNING…
THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN BALTIMORE MD/WASHINGTON HAS ISSUED A WINTER STORM WATCH…WHICH IS IN EFFECT FROM SUNDAY MORNING THROUGH MONDAY MORNING.
* PRECIPITATION TYPE…SNOW AND SLEET WILL CHANGE OVER TO FREEZING RAIN SUNDAY AFTERNOON. FREEZING RAIN IS EXPECTED TO LAST UNTIL LATE SUNDAY NIGHT OR MONDAY MORNING BEFORE CHANGING TO RAIN.
* ACCUMULATIONS…1 TO 2 INCHES OF SNOW AND SLEET AND A QUARTER INCH OR MORE OF ICE ACCUMULATION IS POSSIBLE.
* TIMING…SNOW AND SLEET ARE EXPECTED TO BEGIN SUNDAY MORNING. A CHANGEOVER TO FREEZING RAIN IS EXPECTED MIDDAY SUNDAY AND WILL CONTINUE INTO THE NIGHT BEFORE CHANGING OVER TO RAIN LATE SUNDAY NIGHT OR MONDAY MORNING.
* TEMPERATURES…AROUND 30 DEGREES.
* WINDS…LIGHT NORTHERLY WINDS.
* IMPACTS…HAZARDOUS TRAVEL CONDITIONS ARE PROBABLE DUE TO SLICK ROADS AND ICY CONDITIONS SUNDAY AND POSSIBLY INTO MONDAY. INCREASED POWER OUTAGES ARE POSSIBLE.
A WINTER STORM WATCH MEANS THERE IS A POTENTIAL FOR SIGNIFICANT SNOW…SLEET…AND ICE ACCUMULATIONS THAT MAY IMPACT TRAVEL. CONTINUE TO MONITOR THE LATEST FORECASTS.
Bitter cold, gusty winds and possible snow flurries are on tap for today, weather-wise.
Forecasters say an Arctic cold front is bringing unseasonably cold temperatures — in the 30s and 40s — to the area. Are you ready to see snow flakes flying, or is it too early in the fall for your tastes?
Arlington and the surrounding D.C. region is under a Flood Watch through midnight tonight.
Forecasters say 3-6 inches of rain has fallen since Wednesday and another 1-3 inches is expected tonight, raising the possibility of flooding. From the National Weather Service:
…FLOOD WATCH IN EFFECT UNTIL MIDNIGHT EDT TONIGHT…
THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN STERLING VIRGINIA HAS EXPANDED
* FLOOD WATCH TO INCLUDE PORTIONS OF MARYLAND…THE DISTRICT OF
COLUMBIA AND VIRGINIA…INCLUDING THE FOLLOWING AREAS…IN
MONTGOMERY…PRINCE GEORGES AND ST. MARYS. THE DISTRICT OF
COLUMBIA. IN VIRGINIA…ARLINGTON/FALLS CHURCH/ALEXANDRIA…
FAUQUIER…SPOTSYLVANIA AND STAFFORD.
* UNTIL MIDNIGHT EDT TONIGHT
* THREE TO SIX INCHES OF RAIN HAS ALREADY FALLEN SINCE WEDNESDAY
ACROSS THE GREATER WASHINGTON DC METRO AREA…CENTRAL MARYLAND
AND THE NORTHERN PIEDMONT REGION OF VIRGINIA. STEADY MODERATE TO
HEAVY RAIN CURRENTLY OVER NORTHERN VIRGINIA WILL SLOWLY SHIFT
SOUTHWARD THROUGH MIDNIGHT.
* ADDITIONAL AMOUNTS OF ONE TO LOCALLY THREE INCHES ARE POSSIBLE
THROUGH THIS EVENING. THIS AMOUNT OF RAINFALL WOULD CAUSE
FLOODING OF SMALL STREAMS AND URBAN AREAS.
A FLOOD WATCH MEANS THERE IS A POTENTIAL FOR FLOODING BASED ON
YOU SHOULD MONITOR LATER FORECASTS AND BE ALERT FOR POSSIBLE
FLOOD WARNINGS. THOSE LIVING IN AREAS PRONE TO FLOODING SHOULD BE
PREPARED TO TAKE ACTION SHOULD FLOODING DEVELOP.
AAA Mid-Atlantic is reminding motorists to drive carefully in wet weather.
The association sent out the following press release this afternoon.
As the coastal storm continues through the Washington metro area today, motorists will face hazardous driving conditions during their evening commute due to rain and standing water, warns AAA Mid-Atlantic. The auto club is advising motorists to exercise caution when driving.
“Commuters heading home tonight will face the same hazardous weather conditions as this morning’s drive to work,” said John B. Townsend II, AAA Mid-Atlantic’s Manager of Public and Government Affairs. “When driving in wet weather remember to buckle up, slow down, and keep a safe distance from the car in front of you. Also, remember, it’s the law in the District of Columbia, Maryland and Virginia to turn your headlights on if your windshield wipers are in use.”
To minimize the hazards associated with wet weather driving, AAA Mid-Atlantic recommends the following precautions for navigating in heavy rain, reduced visibility and slick pavement:
- Slow down and increase following distances. Speed limits are set for ideal road conditions. When it rains, visibility is reduced and braking distances increase. On dry pavement, a safe following distance permits two to three seconds for stopping; that should be increased to eight seconds on slippery roads. Train your eyes farther down the road than normal, so you can anticipate changes and adjust your course gradually.
- Do not attempt to drive through standing water on the roads that look too deep. Avoid bridges and roads that are known to flood. When driving on pothole-filled roads, hold the steering wheel firmly to avoid losing control. Just a few inches of water can turn your vehicle into a boat, and could put your life, and the lives of those around you, at great risk. Turn around; find another way to get to your destination.
- Watch out for hydroplaning. No car is immune from hydroplaning on wet surfaces, including four-wheel drive vehicles. Just because brakes work under normal conditions doesn’t mean they will react the same on slippery roads where tires roll with far less traction.
- Alert drivers behind you that you’re slowing with your brake lights. Without anti-lock brakes, squeeze the brakes until they are about to lock up and then release. With anti-lock brakes, use the same move – but don’t pump the brakes, which would work against the operation of the ABS system. Slow down as you approach a pothole. However, do not brake when your vehicle is directly over a pothole.
- Use the central lanes. When driving during heavy rain, use center lanes of the road (without straddling the yellow line). Avoid outside lanes where the water collects at curbside.
- Use low-beam headlights to help other drivers see your car and increase visibility.
- Use your defroster with your air conditioning to keep the air dry and prevent windows from fogging.
- Do not drive around barricades. Many lives have been lost when drivers disregard official orders and find themselves trapped in rising waters.
- Turn off the cruise control in wet weather driving. The use of cruise control on wet roads can cause hydroplaning.
- If conditions worsen to the point where there is any doubt about your safety, take the nearest exit and find a safe location. Don’t just stop on the shoulder or under a bridge where you may feel less anxiety. If your visibility is compromised, other drivers may be struggling too.
- Watch for slick spots on the road. Fumes and oil leaks that build up on dry pavement rise to the surface of the road when it rains, making the road far slicker than it may seem.
Arlington County and much of the rest of the D.C. region is under a Tornado Watch through 5:00 p.m.
Forecasters say an incoming cold front could produce strong storms and possibly tornados. From the National Weather Service:
A STRONG COLD FRONT WILL MOVE INTO THE MID-ATLANTIC STATES TODAY. SHOWERS AND ISOLATED THUNDERSTORMS COULD PRODUCE A PERIOD HEAVY RAINFALL THIS AFTERNOON WITH LOCALIZED FLOODING MAINLY IN URBAN LOCATIONS. AN ISOLATED TORNADO AND LOCALLY DAMAGING WIND GUSTS ARE POSSIBLE WITH ANY THUNDERSTORMS THAT DEVELOP.
Arlington County is under a Severe Thunderstorm Watch until 10:00 p.m. tonight, according to the National Weather Service.
Forecasters say severe storms may form as a cold front approaches the area. From Arlington County:
The NWS has issued a Severe Thunderstorm Watch for the NCR, Northern Virginia, and Maryland, effective until 2200 tonight. A cold front will approach the area today and will produce numerous thunderstorms. A few of these storms will be capable of producing locally damaging wind gusts and large hail.
Update at 4:25 p.m. — The county is now under a Severe Thunderstorm Warning.
THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN STERLING VIRGINIA HAS ISSUED A
* SEVERE THUNDERSTORM WARNING FOR… THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA… SOUTHEASTERN MONTGOMERY COUNTY IN CENTRAL MARYLAND… CITY OF FAIRFAX IN NORTHERN VIRGINIA… CITY OF FALLS CHURCH IN NORTHERN VIRGINIA… ARLINGTON COUNTY IN NORTHERN VIRGINIA… CITY OF ALEXANDRIA IN NORTHERN VIRGINIA… WESTERN PRINCE GEORGES COUNTY IN CENTRAL MARYLAND… CENTRAL FAIRFAX COUNTY IN NORTHERN VIRGINIA…
* UNTIL 500 PM EDT
* AT 416 PM EDT…A SEVERE THUNDERSTORM WAS DETECTED NEAR POTOMAC… AND ANOTHER OVER FAIRFAX CITY. THOSE STORMS ARE FORECAST TO COMBINE OVER THE DISTRICT AS THE MOVE EAST AT 10 MPH. THESE STORMS ARE CAPABLE OF PRODUCING DAMAGING WINDS IN EXCESS OF 60 MPH.
* LOCATIONS IMPACTED INCLUDE… THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA… BETHESDA… AMERICAN UNIVERSITY… CHEVY CHASE… GEORGETOWN… TAKOMA PARK… LANGLEY PARK… WHITE OAK… HILLANDALE…
THIS IS A DANGEROUS STORM. IF YOU ARE IN ITS PATH…MOVE INDOORS TO A STURDY BUILDING AND STAY AWAY FROM WINDOWS. WHEN IT IS SAFE TO DO SO…REPORT SEVERE WEATHER TO LOCAL LAW ENFORCEMENT OR TO THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE.
THIS STORM IS PRODUCING FREQUENT CLOUD TO GROUND LIGHTNING. IF YOU CAN HEAR THUNDER…YOU ARE CLOSE ENOUGH TO BE STRUCK BY LIGHTNING. MOVE INDOORS IMMEDIATELY.
Update at 4:35 p.m. — Reagan National Airport is currently under a ground stop due to storms.
The low temperature at Reagan National Airport this morning was a chilly 60 degrees. Despite lots of sunshine, we’ll be lucky to reach 80 degrees this afternoon.
It’s a continuation of yesterday’s fall-like weather, which tied for the 4th-coolest Aug. 14 in recorded D.C. history, according to the Capital Weather Gang.
Arlington and the D.C. region is currently under an excessive heat warning. The National Weather Service says it will be dangerously hot today.
EXCESSIVE HEAT WARNING IN EFFECT FROM NOON TODAY TO 8 PM EDT THIS EVENING…
THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN BALTIMORE MD/WASHINGTON HAS ISSUED AN EXCESSIVE HEAT WARNING… WHICH IS IN EFFECT FROM NOON TODAY TO 8 PM EDT THIS EVENING. THE HEAT ADVISORY IS NO LONGER IN EFFECT.
* HEAT INDEX VALUES… AROUND 110 DEGREES DUE TO THE COMBINATION OF TEMPERATURES IN THE UPPER 90S TO AROUND 100 DEGREES AND DEWPOINTS IN THE MIDDLE 70S.
* IMPACTS… HIGH RISK OF HEAT STROKE OR OTHER HEAT-RELATED ILLNESS FOR THOSE WITHOUT AIR-CONDITIONING OR THOSE OUTDOORS FOR ANY EXTENDED PERIOD.
AN EXCESSIVE HEAT WARNING MEANS THAT A PROLONGED PERIOD OF DANGEROUSLY HIGH TEMPERATURES WILL OCCUR. THE COMBINATION OF EXTREME TEMPERATURES AND HIGH HUMIDITY WILL CREATE A DANGEROUS SITUATION IN WHICH HEAT ILLNESSES ARE EXPECTED. CHECK IN ON RELATIVES AND NEIGHBORS.
TAKE EXTRA PRECAUTIONS IF YOU WORK OR SPEND TIME OUTSIDE. WHEN POSSIBLE… RESCHEDULE STRENUOUS ACTIVITIES TO EARLY MORNING OR EVENING. KNOW THE SIGNS AND SYMPTOMS OF HEAT EXHAUSTION AND HEAT STROKE. WEAR LIGHT WEIGHT AND LOOSE FITTING CLOTHING WHEN POSSIBLE AND DRINK PLENTY OF WATER.
TO REDUCE RISK DURING OUTDOOR WORK… THE OCCUPATIONAL SAFETY AND HEALTH ADMINISTRATION RECOMMENDS SCHEDULING FREQUENT REST BREAKS IN SHADED OR AIR CONDITIONED ENVIRONMENTS. ANYONE OVERCOME BY HEAT SHOULD BE MOVED TO A COOL AND SHADED LOCATION. HEAT STROKE IS AN EMERGENCY – CALL 9 1 1.