Update at 2:30 p.m. — The fire has been extinguished and Four Mile Run Drive is expected to reopen shortly. The access road is expected to remain closed until the fallen tree is removed.
Update at 2:15 p.m. — Electricity has been shut off to the fallen power lines and firefighters are now working to extinguish the brush fire.
Earlier: A tree has fallen on power lines and sparked a growing brush fire along Four Mile Run Drive.
The incident was first reported by a passerby just after 1 p.m.
Initial reports suggest a large tree fell across the Four Mile Run Drive access road, striking a power line. That sparked a brush fire in the dry grass below, which as of 1:20 p.m. continues to burn.
The fire department cannot extinguish the wildfire around the power line until Dominion Power crews arrive and shut off the power, according to scanner traffic. As of 1:40 p.m. the flames were nearing vehicles parked along the access road.
Residents should expect “a lot of smoke in the area,” according to a police officer on scene. Police have shut down traffic in both directions on the access road near S. Wakefield Street and are preparing to shut down the mainline Four Mile Run Drive.
Photo courtesy Alex Chamandy, John Chandler
Nearly 900 Dominion customers are still without power in Arlington as of 5 p.m. Monday, with numerous small outages scattered across the county.
That’s down from more than 6,500 outages last night, after an initial line of 60+ mile per hour wind gusts swept through the area. The strong winds continued through this afternoon but have since died down.
Dominion’s power outage map shows the two biggest power outages are in the Highgate/Colonial Terrace community in the Rosslyn area, and along 26th Street N./31st Street N., near Marymount University, where photos (above and via Twitter) show at least one tree down in the roadway and a power pole snapped in half.
Dominion is estimating that power will be restored by 11 p.m. and 8 p.m., respectively, for each outage.
In all, around 3,000 Dominion customers are still in the dark around Northern Virginia.
Update at 8 a.m. — Thousands of Arlington residents are waking up to no electricity this morning. The number of outages in Arlington is only down to around 4,900. Marymount University is still without power and portions of the Rosslyn/Courthouse area, including traffic signals at some busy intersection, are dark.
Numerous trees, power lines and utility poles are said to be down across parts of Arlington, primarily in north Arlington. Several transformer fires have also been reported.
In some cases, trees are leaning against live lines and catching on fire. In other cases, power lines and poles are down across roadways, blocking lanes. Glebe Road, Military Road and Williamsburg Blvd are among the roads reported to blocked.
On Williamsburg Blvd, a fire department vehicle was damaged, possibly by falling branches or debris.
A large portion of Arlington north of Lee Highway — from Cherrydale up to McLean, including the Marymount University campus — is in the dark, according to a Dominion outage map.
There are also portions of Shirlington, Fairlington and other areas of south Arlington without power, according to the map.
In all, more than 34,000 Dominion customers throughout Northern Virginia are without power, including more than 7,000 in Alexandria. High winds are expected to continue throughout the day on Monday.
— ᴊᴀsᴍɪɴᴇ (@Parks_Jasmine) February 13, 2017
Dominion power estimates 2am-4am for power restoration. Phones and Internet remain operational. Updates will follow.
— Marymount University (@marymountu) February 13, 2017
Power outage on campus. Internal phones remain operational. Updates will follow.
— Marymount University (@marymountu) February 13, 2017
— Russell Imrie (@tweedyBard) February 13, 2017
1121pm: 66 mph wind gust at Reagan Airport!
— NWS DC/Baltimore (@NWS_BaltWash) February 13, 2017
A FedEx tractor trailer pulled down some low-hanging power lines in the Ballston area Thursday evening, trapping the driver in the cab of the truck.
The accident happened just before 3:30 p.m., near the intersection of 13th Street N. and N. Stuart Street.
The top of the truck clipped some power lines as it was driving down the street, pulling them down and draping them across the semi-trailer. The lines were reported to be sparking on the road immediately afterward.
Though the driver was not physically trapped, he remained in the cab of the truck for fear of electrocution.
Arlington County police and firefighters responded to the scene, closing down roads and sidewalks while they waited for Dominion to shut off the power.
The driver was still in the cab when an ARLnow photographer left the scene, around 4 p.m.
Dominion reports that seven customers in the neighborhood are without power. Their electricity is expected to be restored between 7-11 p.m., according to Dominion’s website.
A road is closed in the Arlington Ridge neighborhood due to a downed tree and power lines.
The large tree fell this afternoon during calm weather, taking power and utility lines down with it. Thirty-five Dominion customers are without power in the area, according to the power company.
A Dominion repair crew is on scene, but the intersection of S. Joyce Street and 28th Street S., near Glebe Road, is closed. The tree and numerous wires are down in the intersection.
(Updated at 2:40 p.m.) A construction vehicle is currently draped with downed power lines near Virginia Square.
The incident occurred shortly before noon at 3700 6th Road N. as the truck was being hauled through the Ashton Heights neighborhood.
Firefighters and police were called to the scene and currently have the sidewalk and the road closed for safety, as the lines were believed to be live electrical lines.
No injures were reported, but at least one neighboring home was reportedly damaged.
— William Ponds (@wponds) July 26, 2016
Lights are dark along Washington Blvd in Ballston after a tree fell, pulling power lines down.
A large tree fell across N. Stuart Street, bringing power lines down and causing a power outage. N. Stuart Street is currently closed to traffic.
Power is currently out from N. Stafford Street to N. Glebe Road. Police officers are directing traffic at the intersection of N. Glebe Road and Washington Blvd.
Dominion is reporting 188 customers out of service, with an estimated restoration time between 8 p.m. and 1 a.m. Washington-Lee High School is also out of power, according to a police officer working security at the school.
As of 4:30 this afternoon, multiple power lines were down, including one that stretched across S. George Mason. Residents were standing outside their homes watching crews work to restore power.
Traffic lights at S. Columbus Streets were also dark due to the power outage.
As of press time, the cause of the downed wires had not been determined. Dominion Electric is currently reporting that 50 customers are out of power in the area due to a broken pole.
The company predicts power will be restored between 7-9 p.m. tonight.
Police are helping to direct traffic at the busy intersection of Lee Highway and Glebe Road due to a problem with the traffic lights.
The lights are dark after a wire disconnected from the transformer by the Wells Fargo bank. Scanner traffic reported that the wire was brought down by a passing truck.
Police set up cones and were directing traffic while crews reconnected the wire and worked to get the traffic signals working again. Traffic lights in all four directions were affected.
An officer at the scene said it appears a tall moving truck had become caught on low hanging wires over the street, but didn’t realize it and kept driving. The wires came down, along with a power pole which held a transformer.
There are currently wires in the street, across sidewalks and in people’s yards. The lines are no longer live, and crews are working to move them. Nobody was hurt in the incident
Seventy-six customers were without power for about an hour and a half. Right now, only 10 are still without power. Dominion Power spokeswoman Le-Ha Anderson said those without electricity are the ones closest to the downed transformer, and power should be restored somewhere between 4:00 p.m. and 6:00 p.m. Crews are bringing in a new power pole and transformer to be installed, hopefully also by 6:00 p.m.
Taylor Street remains closed between 15th and 16th Streets. Arlington County police will stay on the scene to direct traffic until the road re-opens.
The contract for the final phase of the ongoing effort was awarded to Trafford Corporation. The first phase of the project, which includes removing overhead electrical lines from I-66 to N. Monroe St, is in its final stages.
When the project is finished late next year, Lee Highway will no longer have power lines dangling overhead from I-66 to N. Quincy St. This is one of the first utility undergrounding projects the County has undertaken.
This part of the neighborhood revitalization project has been in the works for years and has suffered from numerous delays. Some of the challenges have included avoiding interference with existing utilities under the roadway, working around private properties, and dealing with unforeseen circumstances such as utility crews being sent to deal with the aftermath of Hurricane Irene.
Following the completion of the undergrounding, the County plans to go forward with the remainder of the Cherrydale Lee Highway Revitalization Project. That involves restarting the planning and construction on other aesthetic and pedestrian safety improvements. Right now, that’s anticipated to be finished sometime in 2014.
The closure is due to power lines that were knocked down by a tractor trailer, according to police spokeswoman Det. Crystal Nosal. Dominion is on the scene and expects to have the lines repaired by 10:30 a.m. More than 150 Dominion customers are without power in the area due to the downed lines.
Eastbound Lee Highway traffic is being diverted onto southbound George Mason Drive. Cars are not being allowed to turn left at the intersection, to ensure that traffic moves smoothly through the area.
South Frederick Street has been shut down between Columbia Pike and 10th Street S. after a truck knocked down a utility pole and became entangled in power lines.
A garbage truck reportedly knocked down the pole just after 3:00 p.m. today. The road will be closed for awhile to allow crews time to clean up the broken pole and a tangle of wires.
Numerous reports of downed power lines, toppled trees, dislodged traffic signs and blowing debris are coming in.
Among the reports we’re following right now:
- Downed power line on Four Mile Run Drive at George Mason Drive. Traffic is being diverted. Dominion is on the scene.
- Large tree down at 3700 North Harrison Street
- Awnings dislodged and glass broken at 3100 Clarendon Boulevard
- Compromised roof at 1300 South Arlington Ridge Road
- Updated at 5:05 pm. — Large tree down at 17th Street and North Utah Street
- Updated at 5:05 pm. — Wires down at 23rd Street North and George Mason Drive
- Updated at 5:05 pm. — Tree down at George Mason Drive and Four Mile Run Drive
- Updated at 5:05 pm. — Dominion is reporting 1,368 customers without power in Arlington
- Updated at 5:10 pm. — Wires down at 18th Street and South Edgewood Street
There are now just under 13,000 Dominion customers without power, a number that seems to keep falling.
Highways like I-66 and I-395, which were jammed last night with traffic, snow and disabled and crashed vehicles, are now clear. Most major local county roads are clear. But many side streets remain impassable, either because of snow or downed trees. A big test will come in the next hour, as federal employees — currently on a two-hour delay — start heading to work.
Arlington County says its Emergency Communications Center handled more than 2,400 call during and after the storm last night. Normal call volume during that 12-hour time period is just under 900.
The county has issued a press release about its response to the storm:
ARLINGTON, Va. — Arlington County road crews have cleared the County’s arterial streets hours after a “thunderstorm” dumped several inches of snow on the County and snarled traffic across the region. Crews now are focusing on collector streets and will move into neighborhoods later this morning.
With schools closed and County government opening two hours late, the County is dealing with low hanging power lines, downed lines and fallen trees, or large branches thatt were obstructing roadways and sidewalks. A handful of vehicles were abandoned by commuters on County streets Wednesday night, impeding some plowing operations on arterial streets. By 8 a.m. Thursday, crews had cleared 20 downed trees, but at least seven trees were reportedly blocking streets, and another 11 streets were partially blocked.
“Our crews are hard at work and doing their best to dig the County out and get folks back to work and school as soon as possible,” said County Manager Barbara Donnellan. “We’re making good progress and we thank our residents and businesses for their patience.”
Residents urged to use public transit
The County’s Environmental Services department asked residents to use caution on the roadways and take public transit if they must travel today. Drivers who see a plow/salt spreader, should stay at least 100 feet behind the truck until it is safe to pass.
The County also asks residents to make sure their cars are off residential streets, if off-street parking is available, so that plows can move quickly and safely. The County has deployed 45 plows to clear and treat Arlington roadways. About 150 men and women have been working in two 12-hour shifts around the clock since before the storm hit.
Water pressure re-established
This morning our Water Sewer Streets Bureau investigated reports of low water pressure/no water in the area of Lee Hwy from Military Rd west to Washington Blvd. A power outage at a pumping station was suspected and a crew has since re-established pressure at the pumping station.
The widespread power outages affected a number of County facilities. Crews are working to reestablish power to those facilities. About 13,769 Dominion Power customers in Arlington were without power as of 6:45 a.m., many of those were north of Lee Highway.
ECC inundated with calls
The County’s Emergency Communications Center processed approximately 2411 inbound and outbound calls in a 12-hour period during the snow incident. (During December 2010, on a typical Wednesday, ECC processed on average of approximately 896 inbound and outbound calls from the center in a 12-hour period.)
The ECC dispatched about 356 fire calls for service, 75% of them directly storm-related. Another 229 calls for service were dispatched, 57% of them were directly storm-related.
For detailed information on closings, schedule changes and winter weather tips, and for information on the snow ordinance, visit the County Web site.
The Virginia Department of Emergency Management has also issued a press release about the clean-up, after the jump.