Power restoration could take several days

April 20, 2011  //  

VDEM News Release

Virginia Department of Emergency Management
10501 Trade Court, Richmond, VA 23236

CONTACT: Laura Southard (804) 674-2400


Power restoration could take several days
State and local responders working to clear roads


RICHMOND, VA — Although round-the-clock efforts are under way to restore power to all residents of northern Virginia, people should be ready to be without power for several days. Emergency responders and power companies are working to restore traffic flow and repair damaged power facilities. Temperatures will remain low and inhibit snowmelt.

“There are abandoned and disabled vehicles, downed trees and utility lines slowing traffic on roads throughout the area,” said Michael Cline, state coordinator for the Virginia Department of Emergency Management. “Power restoration efforts could take time as crews slowly gain access to the affected areas.”

At noon, 91,000 Virginia Dominion Power customers were without power. The heavy, wet snow fell at rush hour yesterday, leading to widespread power outages and hindering snow removal.

The Virginia Department of Transportation has 2,200 trucks treating and plowing roads in northern Virginia. Interstates and major routes are mostly clear at this time, but motorists should be alert to icy patches, narrowed lanes and snow removal equipment in action. Secondary and subdivision street conditions range from moderate to minor, meaning most are passable but may remain slushy, icy or partially snow-covered.

Several traffic signals are out; drivers should treat intersections as four-way stops. Motorists who must travel should check current weather, road conditions and traffic cameras at www.511Virginia.org or by calling 511.

Anyone needing to locate their vehicle that has been towed from an interstate needs to call the nearest Virginia State Police dispatch center. The caller must provide state police with the vehicle’s license plate number in order for the vehicle to be located.

Those without power should practice basic safety:

  • Keep space heaters at least three feet from other objects. Never leave space heaters unattended. Kerosene, propane and natural gas space heaters should be well ventilated.

  • Use flashlights instead of candles for light.

  • Use generators only outdoors and only in well-ventilated areas.

  • Dress in layers and wear a hat for warmth.

  • Avoid overexertion while shoveling, pushing a car or other strenuous tasks



Be ready. Be willing to help.

Virginia Disaster Relief Fund