The pursuit began when the suspect vehicle rammed an Arlington County Police cruiser near N. Barton and Pershing Drive, in Lyon Park, according to Arlington County Police spokesman Dustin Sternbeck.
The vehicle, a late model Honda Accord, slammed into the front passenger side of the cruiser after the officer attempted to pull it over for a traffic stop, Sternbeck said. No injuries were reported as a result of the crash, though Sternbeck described the damage as “significant.”
Arlington County officers then chased the vehicle to I-395. The chase ended after officers set up a “rolling roadblock” in the northbound lanes, just before the suspects crossed into D.C.’s jurisdiction.
Police activity is currently blocking all but one northbound HOV lane just before the 14th Street Bridge. Police have two suspects in custody, both District of Columbia residents, Sternbeck said. The men are expected to be charged with felony hit and run.
It is normally Arlington County Police policy to not pursue fleeing vehicles except in special circumstances.
The couch fell off a truck on southbound I-395 near the Pentagon. It’s unclear if the victim of the accident ran into the couch or swerved and ran into a highway barrier.
No injuries were reported. Police attempted to locate the owner of the couch, but as of this morning no police report has been filed, according to an ACPD spokesman.
The HOV lanes of I-395 have been shut down due to a jackknifed tractor trailer that struck the highway wall divide.
Police have blocked traffic because the truck is leaking fuel and they fear it might ignite. The fuel is coming from a 100+ gallon saddle tank, according to scanner traffic. A hazmat team is being dispatched to the scene.
A long line of northbound traffic is now at a standstill in the HOV lanes.
Update at 9:20 a.m. — NB I-395 has partially reopened.
(Update at 8:40 a.m.) Traffic on northbound I-395 is completely blocked following a serious multi-vehicle accident near Crystal City.
Three vehicles are involved, according to Arlington County Police spokesman: a Toyota Corolla, a white van and a box truck. The white van rolled on its side, trapping its two occupants, Sternbeck said. Both have since been extricated from the vehicle and are being transported to a local hospital.
Three ambulances have been requested to the scene for two to three reported injuries. The van was said to be carrying propane tanks, but no hazmat response was required.
I-395 northbound is completely blocked at Route 110. Traffic is being diverted onto the HOV lanes of 395.
Initial reports suggest the accident involved an off-duty police officer in his or her personal vehicle. The HOV lanes are partially blocked near Glebe Road as a result of the accident. HOV traffic is getting by on the shoulder.
At least one mainline southbound and northbound lane of I-395 is also blocked. Southbound traffic is currently slowing near the Pentagon.
A D.C. taxicab somehow went up a steep embankment, ran into and partially went over a guardrail on Washington Boulevard this afternoon.
The accident happened around 1:00 p.m. on the section of Washington Boulevard between I-395 and Columbia Pike. Initial reports suggest the taxi was heading northbound from I-395 to Washington Boulevard when it ran up an embankment and into the guardrail along the southbound lanes of Washington Boulevard.
It’s unclear how the accident happened, although initial reports suggest another vehicle might have been involved in the accident; that vehicle suffered only minor damage.
The driver of the Ford Crown Victoria cab was extricated by firefighters and taken to a local hospital, according to scanner traffic. Traffic on Washington Boulevard was backed up as crews worked to remove the cab from the guardrail.
Supposedly, according to AAA Mid-Atlantic, the Tuesday after Labor Day was “Terrible Traffic Tuesday.”
But while traffic last Tuesday was actually fairly manageable, traffic today on this Tuesday seems a bit more terrible, at least on one local highway.
Traffic is heavy — moving slowly but steadily — for most of the stretch of northbound I-95/I-395 all the way from Newington to the 14th Street Bridge, according to traffic cameras.
The accident was reported between 7:00 and 7:30, and was said to be blocking several lanes. The lane closures have since been cleared, but as a result of residual delays traffic is crawling all the way back to Alexandria on I-395.
Other main routes that feed onto I-395 also seem to be affected. Eastbound traffic on Route 50, Washington Boulevard and Columbia Pike is very heavy, and delays have also been reported on the GW Parkway near Reagan National Airport.
Alternate streets, such as Route 110 and Route 50, have become jammed as well. Although parts of the George Washington Parkway seem to be moving, other areas are moving slowly, such as the area near the airport.
Drivers should expect significant delays for the morning commute, and should check alternate routes.
Smoke could be seen near the Pentagon this afternoon due to a brush fire.
The fire and the resulting smoke was seen in the median near the southbound I-395/Route 1 split.
Arlington County firefighters arrived on the scene and quickly extinguished the fire, but not before it scorched some dry brush in the median. Two lanes of southbound I-395 are currently blocked by the fire department activity.
Update at 4:10 p.m. — An accident with two injuries was reported in the same area at the time of the brush fire. It’s unclear if the two incidents are related.
Update at 4:50 p.m. — The scene has been cleared. All lanes are open.
Initial reports indicate the accident happened when a vehicle ran into a motorcycle. The motorcyclist is being treated for critical injuries and will be transported to a local trauma center via ambulance, according to Arlington County Police spokesman Dustin Sternbeck.
All HOV traffic is being diverted onto the main southbound lanes of I-395. Southbound backups extend to the 14th Street Bridge.
Update at 2:45 p.m. on 6/5/12 — An update, per Sternbeck: “The driver was charged on scene by Virginia State Police with Reckless Driving and violation of HOV-3. As for the condition of the motorcyclist, he suffered significant injuries but is expected to survive.”
Residents who live along I-395 and Route 1 can expect to hear the roar of motorcycle engines tomorrow, May 25, as the bikers head to hotels in Crystal City — including the rally’s official hotel, the Hyatt Regency at 2799 Jefferson Davis Highway — and to a candlelight vigil at the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in D.C.
On Sunday, Rolling Thunder will rumble over to the Pentagon parking lot at 6:45 a.m. for an event that will be followed by a convoy into D.C. at noon. In order to safely accommodate the rally, Arlington County Police will close Washington Boulevard from I-395 to the Memorial Bridge from 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., according to a press release. During that time, Arlington National Cemetery will only be accessible from southbound George Washington Memorial Parkway or northbound Route 110.
“Motorists should expect large numbers of motorcyclists in Northern Virginia and the entire Washington Metropolitan area this weekend,” the police department advised. In the past, Rolling Thunder has drawn criticism for the amount of noise it generates for those who live along major roadways.
A complete list of Rolling Thunder events is available on the rally’s website.
Police are blocking the ramp from northbound Glebe Road to southbound I-395 — and from southbound I-395 to Shirlington — due to an accident.
One person suffered a back injury as a result of the two-vehicle wreck, according to police radio traffic.
Cars that were stranded on the ramp as a result of the accident are being turned around by police. No word yet on how long the closure may last.
Moran Challenger Gets on Ballot — Rep. Jim Moran (D) will have a Democratic primary challenger, after all. Arlington businessman Bruce Shuttleworth has been certified to appear on the June 12 congressional primary ballot, after initially being rejected by election officials for supposedly not having the required 1,000 petition signatures. Shuttleworth’s campaign sued in federal court; yesterday the Virginia Democratic party certified his candidacy. [Washington Post]
O’Connell’s Undefeated Softball Team — The Bishop O’Connell Knights softball team is undefeated, with a perfect 10-0 record. One of its pitchers, Tori Finucane, has an astounding 0.00 earned run average for the season, with 114 strikeouts in 56 innings. [Sun Gazette]
United Jet Blows Tires at DCA — A United Airlines flight from Houston blew two rear tires while landing at Reagan National Airport on Monday morning. None of the 127 people on board were injured. [Washington Post]
I-395 HOV Lanes Close Overnight — The HOV lanes of I-395 — from the 14th Street Bridge to the Springfield Mixing Bowl — are closing from 9:30 p.m. until 3:30 a.m. this week. VDOT says the closures will allow it to install new overhead signs and to complete some bridge painting work. [Associated Press]
New Library ‘Digital Projects Lab’ Taking Reservations — Arlington Central Library’s new Digital Projects Lab is opening on Monday, April 16. The lab — which will offer library patrons the use of digital media creation tools like Photoshop and Final Cut Pro — is now accepting reservations. [Arlington Public Library]
Update at 9:30 a.m. — All but one northbound lane is now blocked.
The ramp from Shirlington circle to northbound I-395 is blocked due to an accident.
A U-Haul truck and at least one other vehicle was involved in the accident along the northbound lanes of I-395. The vehicles ended up on the ramp, which is now completely blocked by emergency crews. One northbound lane is also blocked.
At least one injury has been reported as a result of the accident. Police are now directing the drivers stranded on the ramp to turn around and find an alternate route to the highway.
Virginia Department of Transportation officials say they’re waiting for the results of a state police investigation into the death of Alexandria paramedic Joshua Weissman before deciding what to do about the gaps. As of today the investigation is “still ongoing,” according to Virginia State Police spokeswoman Corinne Geller.
Weissman fell through one of the gaps while trying to reach a burning vehicle in the HOV lanes of I-395 on Feb. 8. He fell some 20 to 30 feet into the creek and was knocked unconscious, authorities said at the time. Weissman later succumbed to his injuries in the hospital.
From below, the two gaps are clearly visible between the mainline of northbound I-395, an HOV ramp, and the HOV lanes themselves. Beneath the gaps are the Four Mile Run bike trail, a rocky berm littered with debris from the homeless individuals who sleep under the bike trail, and a shallow section of Four Mile Run with a jagged concrete structure in the middle.
The gaps pose the biggest danger to police and firefighters, who often will reach an incident in the HOV lanes via the mainline of I-395. If the incident happens to be on the bridge, as it was in the case of the Feb. 8 car fire, those public safety personnel will have to either hurdle over the gap or walk around it, in order to reach the scene and come to the aid of the victims.
One police official tells ARLnow.com said the gaps are “really not a problem in daylight” but can be especially dangerous at night. There are other gaps between lanes along I-395, including in the area of S. Joyce Street in Pentagon City, the official said, adding that he’s personally aware of at least two close calls involving officers nearly falling through the gaps.
Arlington County Fire Chief James Schwartz says that placing a grate between the spans may help eliminate the danger.
“It seemed to me that something like a grating… might be a cheap and adequate solution to that problem,” Schwartz said. He added, though, that it “makes sense” for state police to conclude the investigation before ”rushing out to do something that in the end might not be a complete solution.”