Arlington, VA

U.S. Park Police have released a series of beautiful photos showing the aftermath of this weekend’s snow storm. The photos were taken by Rescue Technician/Paramedic Sergeant Klebaner while on-board Park Police Helicopter Eagle 1 on Sunday. The chopper was making surveillance runs over some of the harder-to-get areas patrolled by the Park Police.

Among the photos are views of Reagan National Airport and Arlington National Cemetery.

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Kudos To The Snow Pros

The county says its snow removal crews are beginning to tackle neighborhood roads.

“Our crews are still working round-the-clock clearing massive amounts of snow from County-maintained roads,” Acting County Manager Barbara Donnellan said in a press release. “We are throwing everything we have into this effort, and have stabilized main roads and secondary roads throughout the County. Crews are beginning to work their way into the neighborhoods. We thank residents for their patience and understanding.”

Hats off to county snow crews and to the private snow plows that did a remarkable job of keeping main roads passable throughout the storm. A storm of this size and duration requires a sustained snow-clearing effort: plowing and shoveling and trucking, over and over again as snow keeps falling. It’s grueling work, and we are lucky to have such a dedicated team of snow pros serving our area.

Also, kudos to all the snow shovelers who kept walkways in front of apartments, businesses and homes clear for all of us.

Unfortunately (or fortunately, depending on your perspective), it’s looking like the snow crews won’t be getting much rest. Another storm is heading our way on Tuesday.

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Statewide, Virginia State Police responded to calls for 1,713 traffic accidents and 1,699 stranded vehicle. According to the Washington Post:

The state police’s Fairfax Division alone responded to 681 calls for service, including 435 disabled vehicles and 121 traffic crashes.

Meanwhile, the State Police are warning people driving to bars and parties for the Super Bowl to be careful on the roads.

“Drivers need to weigh the risks when deciding if attending a Super Bowl party is really worth a crash or getting stuck,” said Colonel W. Steven Flaherty, Virginia State Police Superintendent. “Our greatest concern is what road conditions will be like following the game as temperatures drop and wet, slushy roadways turn icy.”

“No matter what road and weather conditions may be like Sunday, the most important decision individuals must make is to not drink and drive,” said Colonel Flaherty. “Driving impaired with slick road conditions is not just dangerous, but deadly for everyone.”

Some Super Bowls do’s and don’ts from the VSP after the jump.

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Fun in the Snow, In Pictures

It’s amazing how a snow storm that was greeted with such dread, and which prompted calls to “shelter in place,” could actually inspire a greater sense of community. Rather than sheltering in place, many people decided to have fun together outside.

Young and old went sledding on streets and in parks. People could be seen carrying snowboards, wakeboards and cross-country skis. Dog owners were out in force. Footballs were being thrown around.

Others were out for a more utilitarian purpose: to dig out cars and sidewalks from under the 24+ inches of snow.

More photos from a snowy utopia, after the jump.

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Arlington County snow crews continue to work around the clock, focusing their efforts on main roads and emergency routes. The county says crews will not reach most neighborhood roads until Monday.

Here’s a list of safety guidelines from the county’s press release.

  • Hunker down. Stay off the roads and at home if at all possible.
  • Wear light-reflective clothing if you are walking.
  • If you must walk in the street, walk along the sides of the roads, not in the middle. Watch for emergency vehicles, snow plows.
  • Shovel your driveways, walkways, and the sidewalks in front of your property – make sure fire hydrants are cleared of snow.
  • If you have a downed tree blocking a road or on a power line, call 703-228-2222.
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Arlington Police and Fire personnel have been busy all day responding to calls of trees down, wires down, trees and branches on wires, trees catching fire due to lines falling on them, wires and trees blocking roads, and combinations thereof. There have been at least 16 such calls in the past two hours.

In some cases first responders have been able to clear trees from the road by themselves. In cases where wires are down or branches are leaning on wires, all firefighters can do at this point is block off the area and add the incident to Dominion’s long to-do list.

Power outages have been a problem all morning, although Dominion does seem to be making headway in getting more areas back on-line. Currently, there are just over 65,000 power outages reported in Northern Virginia. That’s down from more than 75,000 earlier this afternoon.

Among the power outages reported is an extended outage affecting apartment buildings near Pentagon Row in Pentagon City. These outages could be dangerous, due to the loss of heating in the affected buildings.

“Our crews are out there working as quickly as possible,” a Dominion representative told NBC4 earlier this afternoon. “This is far worse than we experienced in December.”

Here is an incomplete list of locations where emergency personnel have been called for trees, branches, or lines down.

  • 200 block of N. Park Dr.
  • 1300 and 1700 block of N. Kirkwood Rd.
  • N. Pershing Dr. and Piedmont St.
  • 5600 block of S. 5th St.
  • 1900 block of N. Quincy St.
  • 6100 block of N. 11th St.
  • 3100 block of N. Military Rd
  • S. Queen St. and S. 23rd St.
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ART bus service has been suspended for the day due to weather. Above-ground Metrorail and bus service also remains suspended.

The Crystal Couture show has been canceled for tonight. Classes have been canceled at Northern Virginia Community College. Pentagon City mall is closed and will reopen Sunday at 11:00 AM.

Also, the U.S. Postal Service has suspended mail delivery today.

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Arlington County is continuing its plea for drivers to stay off the roads. Police have been responding to reports of cars and trucks stranded in the road, blocking plows.

Crews are still out trying to keep main roads passable for emergency vehicles. Secondary roads will not be treated until well after the snow stops, except in instances where emergency vehicles need assistance getting to a call.

Several plows got stuck in the snow overnight. One plow needed to be towed, according to the Arlington Department of Environmental Services.

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The combination of high winds and heavy, wet snow is already starting to topple large branches and whole trees in the Arlington area.

Wind gusts in excess of 30 miles per hour are currently being recorded at Reagan National Airport. Along with the wind have come reports of downed trees and downed power lines. At least one tree was reported to have caught on fire after falling on live wires.

As of 3:00 AM, Dominion Power was reporting 44,849 outages throughout Northern Virginia. Several hundred of those outages were in Arlington.

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