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by ARLnow.com — June 20, 2016 at 4:05 pm 0

Arlington County police and firefighters are on the scene of a reported grease spill in East Falls Church.

A truck leaking a slippery substance has prompted a number of road or lane closures in the area of Lee Highway and Washington Blvd, according to social media reports.

Update at 4:10 p.m. — A fire department radio transmission described the leak as having come from a “sewage truck.”

Update at 4:15 p.m. — A multi-vehicle crash is also being reported in the area.

Update at 4:35 p.m. — A photographer on scene says the grease leaked from a tanker truck containing cooking oil.

Photos (top) courtesy Andrew Pang

by ARLnow.com — June 13, 2016 at 1:05 pm 0

A two-vehicle crash toppled over a streetlight and an attached traffic signal in Pentagon City today.

The wreck happened around noon, at the intersection of Army Navy Drive and S. Hayes Street, near the Pentagon City mall.

The exact circumstances of the crash were unclear, but one of the vehicles, an SUV, suffered seemingly minor front end damage while the second vehicle, a sedan with an Uber sticker in the window, suffered heavier damage. The damage to the sedan included a windshield apparently smashed by the light pole.

No injuries were reported. One travel lane on both Hayes and Army Navy, as well as part of the sidewalk, was blocked while crews worked to turn off power to the damaged pole and clean up the damage.

by Adrian Cruz — June 10, 2016 at 11:15 am 0

Air Force Cycling Classic Clarendon Cup (photo by timkelley)Extensive road closures are planned in the Clarendon and Crystal City areas over the weekend, for the annual Air Force Cycling Classic event.

Those heading to the bicycle races are encouraged to use Metro, despite the ongoing SafeTrack maintenance work on the Orange and Silver lines. On Saturday, Clarendon on the Orange and Silver lines will be closest station. On Sunday, the closest station will be Crystal City on the Blue and Yellow lines.

For those who decide to drive, there will be restrictions on street parking with temporary “no parking” signs being placed in the race areas.

On Saturday, the following roads will be closed from 4:30 a.m.-5:00 p.m.

  • Wilson Blvd. from N. Fillmore Street to Washington Blvd.
  • Clarendon Blvd. from Washington Blvd. to N. Fillmore Street
  • Washington Blvd. from Wilson Blvd. to N. Highland Street
  • N. Highland Street from Wilson Blvd. to Washington Blvd.
  • N. Garfield Street / N. Fillmore Street from Wilson Blvd. to Washington Blvd.

On Sunday, the following roads will be closed from 4:30 a.m.-5:00 p.m.

  • Crystal Drive from 15th Street S. through S. 23rd Street
  • Wilson Blvd. from N. Kent Street to the ramp to Route 110
  • S. Clark Street from 20th Street S. to 23rd Street S.
  • 20th Street S. from Crystal Drive to S. Clark Street
  • 18th Street S. from Crystal Drive to Bell Street
  • 23rd Street S. from Crystal Drive to S. Clark Street
  • Crystal Drive (west side) from 23rd St S. to the Century Center parking garage

Photo courtesy Tim Kelley

by Adrian Cruz — May 26, 2016 at 10:00 am 0

Traffic on I-66

If you’re planning on leaving home this Memorial Day weekend, you’re not alone.

According to AAA Mid-Atlantic, nearly 966,000 D.C. area residents will travel at least 50 miles for the holiday.

This is the highest travel estimate in the last 11 years and it represents a nearly two percent increase over the 951,000 residents who traveled at this time last year, according to AAA.

The heaviest congestion on area roads is predicted to occur Thursday afternoon between 5-6 p.m.

“The great American road trip is back due to cheaper gas prices. We’re seeing this play out for Memorial Day, with a projected 869,600 people in the Washington metro planning to drive to their Memorial Day destinations,” said AAA’s John Townsend, in a press release.

Gas prices this year are noticeably lower compared to previous years with the national average at $2.29 a gallon, 45 cents cheaper than a year ago. Prices in the D.C. area are also down, averaging $2.28 a gallon, 41 cents cheaper.

Along with the roads, air travel is also expected to increase with a predicted number of 69,100 people expected to fly, a 1.7 percent increase from last year’s numbers.

by Adrian Cruz — May 23, 2016 at 2:40 pm 0

In past years, Arlington has been ranked as having some of the worst drivers in the nation. That doesn’t surprise Brian Meenaghan, who has started a Twitter account to document what he views as a never-ending parade of bad drivers on his block.

Meenaghan, an Arlington Heights resident, started the Twitter account @BadDriversof1stRdS at the end of April. The account focuses on the worst offenders on the 3600 block of 1st Road S., a one-way street located in a high traffic area around S. Glebe Road, Route 50 and the Thomas Jefferson middle school and community center.

“I started this account as a cathartic thing because we’ve had a lot of frustrations on our little block. We’re about 400-450 feet long as a block and we dead end at a middle school,” said Meenaghan. “We have people whipping up this block and people coming the wrong way from the middle school. Because of the oddity of the exit for Route 50 around Glebe Road, we also have a lot of people turning around in driveways and going back up the wrong way, trying to go back to 50.”

Meenaghan’s main concern is drivers going the wrong way on the one-way street (traffic is supposed to only flow from S. Glebe Road to Old Glebe Road). From cars to school buses and even Metrobuses, Meenaghan has caught all types of drivers driving the wrong way or speeding — or both — on the narrow street. Photos and video posted to the Twitter account document the broken traffic laws. (See some of the tweets, below.)

“I work downtown and I’m not here physically during the day all that much and I personally see three or four people turning around every day. I’m probably outside maybe 45 minutes to an hour before dinner with my daughter and I see in just that short amount of time a lot of people going the wrong way,” said Meenaghan.

The Twitter account is a joint venture with his neighbors, who often supply the photos he uploads to the website. Meenaghan said he and his neighbors have been trying for years to convince Arlington County to implement traffic calming measures on the block.

“My neighbors are all very involved in this,” said Meenaghan. “I’m not here that much so I’m not here to take a lot of these pictures. You miss a lot of them because they happen so quickly. Probably six of my neighbors have given me photos over the last couple of weeks. It’s kind of a group-wide effort.”

Part of the impetus for the effort is that the block is now chock full of children.

“We now have 15 kids on this block. There are only 23 houses and there are 15 kids under the age of 10. There have been five kids born in the last six months,” said Meenaghan. (One could perhaps see the block as a microcosm of the challenges with burgeoning enrollment facing Arlington Public Schools.)

Along with the kids living on the block, the presence of Thomas Jefferson Middle School at the end of the block means that there is a constant stream of kids on the block during the school year. It’s only set to become busier, with continued growth at the middle school and the construction of a new elementary school on the middle school’s former parking lot.

(more…)

by Adrian Cruz — May 17, 2016 at 3:00 pm 0

Police motorcycle officers / motorcade on I-395 on 5/13/16 (file photo)

Motorcades for groups of Vietnam War veterans will result in rolling highway closures and potential traffic tie-ups Memorial Day weekend.

The Arlington County Police Department announced Monday that there will be temporary closures on I-66 eastbound on Saturday, May 28 from 10:00 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. The closures are in place to allow Vietnam War veterans to travel to Arlington National Cemetery.

Other roads to be affected by the motorcades include Route 110 southbound and Washington Blvd near Columbia Pike, according to police.

Also, traffic in and around Crystal City is expected to experience delays between 12:30 p.m and 1:30 p.m due to police escorts for another veterans group through the area.

Memorial Day weekend will also bring traffic disruptions on Friday and Sunday due to the 29th annual Rolling Thunder ride, which is separate from the Saturday veterans event. Starting Sunday morning a Rolling Thunder rally will be held at the Pentagon parking lot. That will be followed by a noon departure across the Memorial Bridge and into D.C., before another gathering near the Vietnam Veterans Memorial.

by ARLnow.com — May 16, 2016 at 1:35 pm 0

Firefighters freed an individual from an overturned car in Rosslyn yesterday morning.

The incident happened around 10:30 a.m. Sunday. A two-car crash on N. Nash Street, in front of the Turnberry Tower condo building, led to one of the vehicles flipping on its roof.

“It appeared to me that the grey car was pulling out of a parking spot on the east side of N. Nash and it and the black car collided,” said David Mitchell, who witnessed the aftermath of the wreck. “The black car appeared to be going north on N. Nash and the impact of the collision caused the black car to roll over. There did not appear to be any damage to the cars parked on the west side of N. Nash.”

“I did speak to one person who arrived on the scene about the same time as Engine 110,” Mitchell continued. “He reported, ‘the firemen dived right into the car to check on the occupants.’ He was impressed with their actions and the speed at which they worked. I would say that the sole occupant of the black car was extricated within 15 minutes after ACFD’s arrival.”

There were no reports that anyone suffered life-threatening injuries in the crash.

Photos courtesy David J. Mitchell

by ARLnow.com — April 28, 2016 at 10:40 am 0

A two-vehicle collision resulted in an SUV overturning on Route 1 (Jefferson Davis) this morning.

The crash happened in rainy weather around 10:15 a.m., at the 27th Street S. intersection in Crystal City. An SUV flipped on its roof and a car suffered heavy front-end damage in the wreck.

Two ambulances have been called to the scene, but none of the injuries are reported to be life-threatening.

Northbound Route 1 is down to one lane as crews continue to clean up the wreckage and spilled fluids.

Hat tip to @SRod17

by ARLnow.com — April 25, 2016 at 7:25 pm 0

(Updated at 1:40 p.m.) A man has been struck by a car on 10th Street N. in Clarendon.

The crash happened around 6:45 p.m., on 10th Street N. at the N. Garfield Street intersection, just west of Washington Blvd.

Initial reports suggest a driver in an SUV struck the man as he was in the marked crosswalk. The man, said to be in his 20s, was bloodied but conscious and alert when paramedics arrived. He was transported to the trauma center at George Washington University Hospital with non-life-threatening injuries.

A nearby resident said the intersection is dangerous because drivers speed up as they turn onto 10th Street from Washington Blvd.

“This is what I’ve feared for the longest time and why I’ve repeatedly complained to be county,” said Anne McKenna. “It is a notoriously horrible intersection.”

McKenna said she was instrumental in getting Arlington County to install bright crosswalk signs at the crossing two years ago, but they’ve had little impact on driving behaviors.

“No cars ever stop in that crosswalk and… there is no enforcement,” she wrote in an email. “I’ve never seen ONE law enforcement/code enforcement person in that intersection.”

Police are investigating the crash, but McKenna said the driver, who remained on scene after the crash, was allowed to drive off. Police charged the driver with failure to yield, a minor traffic infraction.

“No arrest or any justice for pedestrians,” McKenna said. “Huge blood stain in street.”

This is the second significant pedestrian crash in Arlington in the past two weeks. Last week a teenage girl was struck and seriously injured while walking in a crosswalk on Washington Blvd in Ballston.

Arlington County is conducting a pedestrian and bike safety campaign this week.

Editor’s note: Citing a witness, an earlier version of this article mistakenly identified the victim as female. Police say the victim was a man.

by ARLnow.com — April 18, 2016 at 3:00 pm 0

Arlington County firefighters are responding to a brush fire in Crystal City.

The smoky fire broke out in the median along Route 1, near the 23rd Street intersection.

Police and an Alexandria medic unit are on scene, attempting to use a fire extinguisher to control the blaze.

Update at 3:05 p.m. — The fire is reported to be out.

by ARLnow.com — April 15, 2016 at 4:15 pm 0

Yes, if you drive through Bluemont via Wilson Blvd during rush hour, your commute has lengthened since Arlington County reconfigured the road. But not by much.

According to a county traffic study, rush hour travel times have increased by only 3 to 15 seconds in each direction. Much of that can be attributed to buses stopping to pick up and drop off passengers, blocking what’s now the only through lane, county staff told residents at a community meeting Thursday night.

Last year, Wilson Blvd was repaved and restriped between the Safeway and Bon Air Park, so that instead of four lanes of traffic, it is now has two lanes of traffic (one in each direction), a turn lane and two bike lanes. Immediately after the changes, some residents said they loved the change, while others complained about a supposed traffic nightmare that they said added 20-40 minutes to their commute.

The lane restriping was largely billed as a safety improvement. Some of the numbers cited by country staff suggest a statistical mixed bag.

The number of vehicle crashes along the reconfigured section of roadway increased slightly, from 3 in the 9 months before the project to 4 in the 9 months after. The number of trips by bicyclists using the stretch of roadway over a 12 hour period increased from 14 to 72, but the number of pedestrians walking along Wilson decreased from 56 to 41 during the same period, according to the presentation given by county staff.

The presentation listed the following “pros” and “cons” of the project.

Pros:

  • Improved bicycle safety
  • New buffer for existing sidewalks
  • Less potential for speeding
  • Less backup due to left turning vehicles

Cons:

  • More delay on side streets accessing Wilson Blvd
  • More vehicular delay due to local bus activity

In its assessment, county staff says the project was a success. The county is now considering options for similar work along Wilson Blvd west of Manchester Street, between the Dominion Hills and Boulevard Manor neighborhoods. That and improvements to the narrow sidewalks along Wilson Blvd have been proposed and may be considered during the county’s upcoming Capital Improvement Plan process.

“There is currently no funding for a long-term project, however, we’ll continue to look for opportunities to extend the demonstration study,” said Arlington Dept. of Environmental Services spokeswoman Jessica Baxter. “We consider the study to be successful overall and have seen substantial improvements to pedestrian and bicycle safety.”

by ARLnow.com — April 11, 2016 at 3:30 pm 0

Old Dominion Drive is being shut down in both directions in the area of N. Wakefield Street and Lee Highway due to downed utility lines.

A truck brought down the lines and damaged at least one utility pole in the process.

An extended closure is possible and may make “a mess” of the evening rush hour, according to police radio traffic.

by ARLnow.com — April 5, 2016 at 9:20 am 0

It was not a good morning commute if you were driving on Route 50 or riding Metro’s Orange or Silver lines over the last hour or so.

First, a crash on Route 50 at N. Fillmore Street around 8 a.m. left a vehicle on its side and one person trapped, before being extricated by firefighters. The eastbound lanes of Route 50 just reopened after an extended closure. Delays extends back several miles.

On Metro, a number of issues on the Orange and Silver line have produced big delays and crowded station.

As a bonus, there were also some issues on the Yellow and Blue lines.

by ARLnow.com — March 30, 2016 at 2:00 pm 0

Arlington Ridge Road will be closed between 19th Road S. and 23rd Street S.Arlington Ridge Road will remain closed at 23rd Street S. during tonight’s evening rush hour, according to Arlington County.

“Water main work will continue on Arlington Ridge Road through the evening rush hour with detours in place at 23rd Street in both directions,” according to an Arlington Alert. “Please seek alternate routes.”

Arlington Ridge Road is typically busy during rush hours, utilized both by local residents and Alexandria commuters exiting I-395. The road also closed last summer for water line installation work and in Feb. 2014 for a water main break.

File photo

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