***SCROLL DOWN FOR UPDATES FROM THE WINTER STORM ON JANUARY 7, 2017***
The First Warning Storm Team is tracking dangerous road conditions and frigid temperatures. Snow and ice covered roads will result in hazardous travel. Overnight temperatures dropping to the teens with wind chills near zero.
The snow has moved out and the skies have cleared, but we are going to continue to feel the impacts from this storm for the next couple of days.
Are you ready for the storm? Check out some of our latest stories on how you can prepare!
Are you ready for the storm? Check out some of our latest stories on how you can prepare!
How are Hampton Roads cities preparing for the storm?
Remember: Residents must clear their own sidewalks and driveways.
Your Responsibility Sec. 42-34. – Removal of snow from
sidewalks – By owners or occupants of abutting property. It shall be the duty
of every person using or occupying, in any manner or for any purpose
whatsoever, any house, store, shop, building or tenement of any kind, and of
persons having charge of churches and public buildings of any description,
other than public schools and buildings owned or occupied by the city, and of
owners of unoccupied houses or unimproved lots, situate on any paved street,
lane or alley in the city, within three (3) hours after the fall of any show
has ceased, to remove and clear away, or cause to be removed and cleared away,
the snow from the sidewalks fronting such house, store, shop, church, building
or lot, in such manner as not to obstruct the passage of the water in the
gutters. If snow ceases to fall between the hours of 3:00 p.m. and 7:00 a.m.,
the removal of the snow before 11:00 a.m. will be deemed compliance with this
section. (Code 1958, § 45-30) State law reference – Authority for above
section, Code of Virginia, § 15.1-867.
Blizzard Warning from 10p Friday to 10p Saturday for Virginia Beach, Chesapeake, Norfolk, Portsmouth, Hampton, Poquoson and parts of the Eastern Shore.
News 3 will be back right here with all your snow updates starting at 5 a.m. Saturday morning!
Check live radar of the snow here: http://bit.ly/1SBgpZY
Snow is falling across most of Virginia this morning as roads are in mostly
moderate, snow covered condition in the southern half of the state with minor
conditions in the northern region. Hardest hit will be the Hampton Roads
region where the heaviest accumulations are expected through the day.
What you need to know now:
*Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) and contract crews are out in force to keep the roads as clear as possible. Even with the treatment and plowing, ROADS ARE SLICK. MOTORISTS ARE URGED TO STAY OFF THE ROADS DURING THE STORM.
*About 70 percent of deaths related to ice and snow occur in automobiles. By staying off the roads during a winter storm, transportation workers and public-safety officials can clear roads and respond more quickly to emergency needs.
*Crews work to clear interstates and primary roads first, then major secondary roads with vital emergency and public facilities, and then other secondary roads and subdivision streets. Crews focus their efforts on those roads that carry the most traffic.
VDOT has approximately 2,500 crewmembers for snow-removal operations statewide. In addition, VDOT uses contractors to clear snow.
VDOT has nearly 13,000 pieces of equipment, including trucks, plows and spreaders, and more than 650,000 tons of salt, sand and treated abrasives to treat roads.
Click here for more winter info.
News 3 viewer Lita L. sent us this photo of the snow in Gloucester!
Virginia State Police have spent the overnight hours responding to multiple calls across the Commonwealth for disabled and crashed vehicles. Road conditions are treacherous and Virginians are advised to stay off the roads.
As of 7 a.m. Saturday (Jan. 7), Virginia State Police are on the scene of 21 disabled vehicles and 55 traffic crashes statewide. There have been no reported fatal crashes.
From midnight Saturday through 5 a.m. Saturday, Virginia State Police have responded to 106 traffic crashes and 58 disabled vehicles statewide.
Virginia State Police are investigating a head-on crash involving a Caroline County Deputy Sheriff on Ladysmith Road. At 5 a.m. Saturday, a pickup truck crossed the centerline and struck the deputy’s marked vehicle. The deputy has been transported to Mary Washington Hospital for treatment of serious, but non-life threatening, injuries. Crash remains under investigation. (Photo: Virginia State Police)
HRT Suspends Public Transit Services
Ice and Snow Creating Hazards
Norfolk (Jan. 7, 2017) – Hampton Roads Transit has suspended all public transportation services for Saturday, Jan. 7, because of snow and ice on roads and bridges associated with the weekend winter storm.
HRT will evaluate road conditions throughout the weekend to determine the best time to resume service.
HRT had planned to use an Emergency Snow Route option that would have allowed limited bus, light rail, ferry service to the region but conditions deteriorated to the point it was not safe to operate. No paratransit services are available.
“The safety of our operators and customers is our top priority,” said William Harrell, president and CEO of HRT. “We will resume operations when it is safer to travel. “
City of Norfolk Winter Storm Update:
*Public Works crews began plowing overnight and are now aggressively plowing primary roads. Crews will plow primary roads several times.
*VDOT has provided additional plows bringing a total to 10 state plows.
As of 8:30 a.m., there is a fleet of 30 plows on the street between city and state resources. There are 25 city spreaders and 12 pickup trucks outfitted with plows.
City of Portsmouth winter storm update:
Currently in the City of Portsmouth we have about 3-4 inches of snow, with all roads covered. Due to the initial sleet, there is an ice layer under the snow causing some issues with plowing operations and driving conditions. At 7am, the sleet turned over to snow, and this will continue until 2pm as forecasted. All weather reports are still calling for 8-12 inches of snow.
The Emergency Operations Center is open and staffed to maintain city operations.
Public Works will continue to work around the clock to clear bridges, primary roads, and streets leading to fire stations and hospitals and ensure emergency response is a priority.
The crews are on 12 hour shifts and the new shift started at 7 a.m.
Residents are encouraged to stay off the roads for their safety and to allow crews to work to clear them.
All City Museums, Libraries, Recreation Centers, Golf Courses, and The Visitor Center are closed Saturday and Sunday and all City Events are cancelled. Rescheduled dates will be announced at a later time.
Kim Cooper sent us photos of her dogs, Annie and Beau, in the snow! Aren’t they adorable?
Greenbrier Mall will be closed today, Saturday, January 7, due to inclement weather. Please note that department store and restaurant hours may vary. We will resume normal hours tomorrow, weather permitting.
• Sledding at Mount Trashmore Park is prohibited because of the dangers of sliding into the roadways.
• Ice-covered waters can be very inviting, especially to children, but they are unsafe. Take care of the children in your lives by keeping them away from any lakes, ponds, canals, etc. Likewise, all adults should keep watch over waters in their neighborhoods to keep children and pets away. Normal ice thickness in the Hampton Roads area will not support the weight of even a small child or pet.
• All city offices and facilities are closed today. No decision has been made yet on the schedule for tomorrow, Sunday, Jan. 8. We will keep you informed as more information is available.
• For help with shoveling, call Operation Blessing
• If you lose power, call Dominion Power…..
• Reserve 911 for true emergencies. For other inquiries, call 311.
Current snow totals as of 11:00 a.m.:
Colonial Place: 5”
Indian River: 3”
Western Branch: 5”
Great Bridge: 4”
Deep Creek: 4”
Buckroe Beach: 5”
Fox Hill: 7”
Camp Peary: 7”
Port Haywood: 9”
Updated Release on Winter Storm from Virginia State Police:
From the hours of 12am to 12noon, the Virginia State Police has taken a total of 253 calls for service. Has investigated 84 traffic crashes, four with injuries, and the other 80 were property damage only. Over a hundred (103) motorists have been assisted with disabled vehicles, and Troopers are currently still working 26 open incidents across the Division.
While travel is highly discouraged, if you must travel, please slow down, buckle up, be alert for slick road conditions, and do not drive distracted.
Please be mindful of Troopers and VDOT workers on the roadway, slow down and move over.
Please refer to VDOT for up to date road conditions at http://www.511virginia.org.
From midnight Saturday through noon Saturday, Virginia State Police have responded to 325 traffic crashes and 322 disabled vehicles statewide. During the same 12-hour period, Virginia State Police have received a total of 1,124 calls for service.
As of 11:45 a.m., troopers are still on scene of 37 traffic crashes and 35 disabled vehicles statewide.
Lesner Bridge has
been reopened for the time being, however, if road conditions deteriorate the
decision to close again may be made. Motorists remain encouraged to stay
off the roads if possible.
The Norfolk Admirals game is still on at the Norfolk Scope tonight at 7:15 p.m. if you want to get out of the house. Be safe and careful though!
Q-Master Billiards will be giving back to those in the community who are working to protect residents during the snow storm! Police, emergency responders, firefighters, and other crews are welcome at the restaurant any time after 2 p.m. for some chili and a game of pool!
Updates on closings in Virginia Beach:
· All community recreation centers, parks and park
facilities. All programming is canceled, including the Archery Demo Day
event at Bayside.
· All Virginia Beach Public Libraries
· Virginia Aquarium & Marine Science Center
· The Virginia Aquarium’s Whales &
Wildlife Sea Adventures Boat Trips scheduled for Sunday, Jan. 8 have
been canceled. Guests who have purchased tickets in advance are being notified
and will be refunded their full purchase price. The next scheduled trip is at 2
p.m., Wednesday, Jan. 11.
· The main Visitor Information Center located
at the entrance to the resort area; the Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel
Visitor Information Center; and Chesapeake Bay Visitor Center at
First Landing State Park.
· Virginia Beach Animal Care & Adoption
Many flights out of Norfolk International Airport have been canceled or delayed.
Click here for the latest updates on flights.
A video posted by WTKR News 3 (@wtkr3) on
Coast Guard to
partially reopen Port of Virginia
PORTSMOUTH, Va. — After evaluating the port conditions following the
passage of Winter Storm Helena, the Captain of the Port (COTP) has revised the
Port of Virginia restrictions.
Effective at midnight on Saturday, vessel traffic will be permitted
to resume through the Hampton Roads COTP zone for all vessels bound to or from
locations in the Maryland-National Capital Region COTP zone. Restrictions
remain in place for vessels bound to or from locations within the Hampton Roads
Vessels bound to or from locations within Hampton Roads are not
permitted to enter or exit the Chesapeake Bay, and vessels over 5,000 Gross
tons may not transit within the Hampton Roads COTP zone without prior
permission from the COTP.
Mariners are advised that the winter storm may have caused damage
to aids to navigation and facilities.
“Right now we are taking small steps to reopen the port,”
said Capt. Kevin M. Carroll, Deputy Sector Commander of U.S. Coast
Guard Sector Hampton Roads. “However, we are still evaluating the impact
of the storm to anticipate any hazards that may still exist.”
Please report any hazards to navigation or aid discrepancies to the
Sector Hampton Roads Command Center at (757)668-6635.
Call (757) 668-5555, ext. 3 for a recorded message of current port
VDOT URGES MOTORISTS TO REMAIN OFF ICY ROADS OVERNIGHT
SUFFOLK– Road conditions remain hazardous across
Hampton Roads. Low temperatures are causing snow covered roads to become icy.
Drivers are advised to avoid travel until conditions improve. If motorists must
travel please use extreme caution and take it slow.
VDOT crews will continue to plow interstate lanes,
shoulders, ramps and primary roads overnight. If you need to be on the highways
while VDOT crews are working, please use extreme caution and do not crowd our
It is VDOT’s goal to have all state-maintained roads
passable within 48 hours after a storm ends, if there are no additional
Update from Suffolk:
Suffolk Department of Public Utilities advise
of a water main leak in the Kempton Park neighborhood causing low water
pressure in the area.
At this time, staff is locating valves
to isolate the section of water main to be repaired.
There will be a period of service
disruption on Cheltenham Street while this repair work is underway.
Public Utilities workers are being
assisted by Public Works staff due to water freezing on the roadway in the area
of the water main leak because of current below freezing temperatures.
It is unknown at this time if the main
break is weather related.
News 3 will be back at 6 a.m. updating this blog with all the latest weather conditions and closings in your area.
Click here for your full forecast.
Update from Virginia State Police:
Since the storm’s arrival in Virginia, Virginia State Police troopers have responded to more than 660 traffic crashes and aided more than 900 disabled vehicles statewide (Time period: Midnight Saturday (Jan. 7) through 6 a.m. Sunday (Jan. 8)). As of 8:30 a.m., Sunday (Jan. 8), state troopers are aiding 15 stuck/disabled motorists and investigating three traffic crashes statewide.
State police have investigated one fatal crash, which occurred Saturday (Jan. 7) in Greene County. Icy roads were a factor in that crash. Fortunately, the majority of crashes on Saturday involved only damage to vehicles.
Due to extremely cold temperatures and icy conditions, State Police are still encouraging drivers to be patient and stay off the roads until temperatures rise and the roads can be treated by VDOT. To check road conditions, please call 511 or go to http://www.511virginia.org for the latest road condition updates. Virginians are asked to keep 911 and #77 lines open for emergencies.
Update from Virginia Department of Transportation:
INTERSTATE CONDITIONS ACROSS HAMPTON ROADS IMPROVING
Motorists should continue to avoid unnecessary travel and expect icy conditions
Nearly 120 VDOT and contractor trucks targeted interstates Southside and on the Peninsula overnight, clearing roadways of snow and ice. Today crews will continue to work mainlines as well as on and off-ramps, bridges and overpasses to address snow and ice-covered pavements. VDOT will also focus on primary and secondary roads. Motorists are still urged to avoid unnecessary travel throughout the region as fallen temperatures produced icy road surfaces.
There are no reported road closures this morning and no major incidents occurred overnight. The Jamestown-Scotland Ferry has returned to full service with two boats running.
More than a hundred VDOT and contractor trucks from across the commonwealth continue to support winter storm-clearing operations in Norfolk, Virginia Beach, Chesapeake, Portsmouth, Franklin, Accomac and on the interstates.
Hardest hit in terms of snow accumulations appears to be the Eastern Shore where snow levels measured 18 inches in some areas. Snow drifts remain a traffic challenge for the Shore this morning.
VDOT reminds residents: When clearing your driveway, shovel to the right. This will cause less snow to be plowed back into driveways.
Update from City of Suffolk:
PUBLIC WORKS CREWS CONTINUE WORKING OUR ROADWAYS
Suffolk Public Works crews continued to stay busy all night working our primary roadways. Bitter cold has shifted treatment from snow to ice in many areas requiring a change in treatment strategies. For the most part, we switched our mixes over to all sand last evening at approximately 11:00 p.m. Crews continue working in 12-hour shifts to monitor road conditions, apply material and push/plow when necessary.
To this point in the event, we have put down 346 tons of salt, 224 tons of sand, and 1,341 tons of abrasive salt/sand mix.
Temperatures are not expected to be above freezing until Tuesday afternoon, greatly impacting our roadways due to continued icing conditions and wind chills below zero.
Motorists are reminded to stay off of the roadways unless absolutely necessary, to be aware of service vehicles and to maintain a safe driving distance.
To report roadway issues, citizens can contact Public Works at 514-7600.
REMINDER: The following city facilities are CLOSED today
– All community recreation centers, parks and park facilities. All programming is canceled, including the Archery Demo Day event at Bayside.
– All Virginia Beach Public Libraries
– Virginia Aquarium & Marine Science Center
– The Virginia Aquarium’s Whales & Wildlife Sea Adventures Boat Trips scheduled for Sunday, Jan. 8 have been canceled. Guests who have purchased tickets in advance are being notified and will be refunded their full purchase price. The next scheduled trip is at 2 p.m., Wednesday, Jan. 11.
– The main Visitor Information Center located at the entrance to the resort area; the Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel Visitor Information Center; and Chesapeake Bay Visitor Center at First Landing State Park.
– Virginia Beach Animal Care & Adoption Center
Due to icy road conditions, Patrick Henry Mall in Newport News, VA will closed to the public on Sunday, January 8, 2017. This decision has been made in order to ensure the safety of our shoppers and employees.
Update from City of Norfolk:
*Primary roads plowed and passable but slick due to ice.
*Icy conditions will remain until temps warm up.
*We ask people stay off roads unless absolutely necessary.
*Public Works crews plowing secondary roads now.
WATER MAIN LEAKS REDUCING PRESSURE IN TWO AREAS
Suffolk Department of Public Utilities advise of two separate incidents involving water main leaks in the Kings Fork Road/Waters Road area to Route 460 along that corridor, as well as the Woodlake Terrace neighborhood.
At this time, staff is mobilizing to isolate the issues and make necessary repairs. They will be assisted by crews from Public Works due to freezing water on the roadway because of current below freezing temperatures.
It is unknown at this time if there will be service impacts to these areas. Water is safe to drink, with only the water pressure an issue at this time.
Coast Guard fully reopens Port of Virginia
PORTSMOUTH, Va. — After evaluating the port conditions following the passage of Winter Storm Helena, the Captain of the Port (COTP) has fully reopened the Port of Virginia.
“The port is back open without restrictions,” said Lt. Ian King of Sector Hampton Roads’ Prevention Department. “However, we urge mariners to be cautious of and to report any hazards to navigation following the storm.“
Please report any hazards to navigation or aid discrepancies to the Sector Hampton Roads Command Center at (757)668-6635.
Chesapeake Public Schools closed Monday, January 9.
York County schools closed Monday, January 9 and Tuesday, January 10
Currituck County Schools will be closed to students on Monday, January 9, 2017 due to lingering hazardous road conditions across the county.
For staff, Monday 1/9 will be an optional workday with a 3 hour delay.
Most City of Virginia Beach offices and facilities will open to the public at 10 a.m. on Monday, Jan. 9 and Tuesday, Jan. 10 under “modified operating conditions.” This means some non-essential services may be limited, delayed or canceled. City employees should follow their department’s emergency procedures and keep in contact with their supervisors as required. The City’s liberal leave policy will be in effect.
All city offices and facilities will open at 10 a.m. on Monday except:
• The Virginia Aquarium & Marine Science Center, which will open to the public at 11 a.m. on Monday.
• The Virginia Beach Animal Care and Adoption Center, which will be open 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Monday.
• Public Works Waste Management collections will resume on Tuesday, Jan. 10 on schedule since there are no Monday collections. Due to road conditions, service may be slower than normal. Residents should leave bins out until crews can get to them.
• In preparation for the Special Election on Tuesday, Jan. 10, the Virginia Beach Voter Registrar’s Office will be open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Monday, Jan. 9. Absentee voting, which would have normally ended on Saturday, was extended by the governor and will take place from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Monday.
• Closed on Monday, Jan. 9 are:
o Virginia Beach City Public Schools
o The Commonwealth’s Attorney’s Office
o The General District Court and Clerk’s Office
o The Circuit Court and Clerk’s Office
o The Juvenile & Domestic Relations Court and Clerk’s Office
Due to icy
conditions, Chowan County Offices will be closed tomorrow, Monday, January 9,
Aubrey Lane, VDOT Secretary of
“Let the emergency workers that
have to be out there do their jobs, clear the roads. If you could stay off the
roads for another day or so, that would be of great help.”
Update from Norfolk:
City offices, Facilities Closed Monday.
Due to weather conditions, all City of Norfolk offices, recreation centers and libraries will be closed Monday, January 9.
Crews are plowing secondary roads now. Primary routes are done, but icy conditions remain.
In additional news, Hampton Roads Transit will operate its Snow Route Service on Monday, January 9. Customer Service will be available from 7 AM to 5 PM.
Due to ice accumulations from the winter weather, Currituck County Government
administrative offices will be closed on Monday, January 9, 2017. Currituck
9-1-1 Communications and all emergency services will remain fully-staffed.
At this time, county offices are expected to reopen on Tuesday, January 10, 2017.
Update from Suffolk:
Suffolk City Offices will be closed on Monday,
January 9, 2017 due to conditions in the aftermath of Winter Storm Helena. All scheduled activities and events are
cancelled, including before and after school care.
Update from Pasquotank and Camden Counties
Pasquotank County Government Offices will be closed Monday,
January 9th – Essential Personnel Only
Camden County Government Offices will be closed Monday,
January 9th – Essential Personnel Only
Elizabeth City Government Offices will operate on a two-hour
Pasquotank Courts will be closed on Monday, January 9th.
Update from Newport News:
The City of Newport News will observe normal business
hours on Monday, January 9, 2017. Liberal leave is in effect.