Live Blog: Tracking the first winter storm of 2018 in Hampton Roads and NE North Carolina

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

***SCROLL DOWN FOR UPDATES FROM THE WINTER STORM ON JANUARY 4, 2018***

The First Warning Storm Team is tracking the first winter storm of 2018. A winter storm warning is in effect from Wednesday at 1 p.m. to Thursday at 1 p.m. for all of Hampton Roads and Northeastern North Carolina.

Most of the area will see 8” to 10” of snow accumulation, with locally higher totals possible. We will see lower snow totals near I-95 and lower totals closer to the Outer Banks (where more rain will mix in).

Interactive Radar | Closings & Delays | Latest Forecast

Click here to sign up for email alerts from the First Warning Storm Team.

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Thursday’s First Warning Forecast: Coastal storm brings blizzard conditions

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Plan on driving in the snow? Here’s what you need to know

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From Virginia State Police:

As the winter storm moves across the eastern, central and northern regions of the Commonwealth, Virginia State Police troopers have remained busy throughout the overnight and early morning hours. Fortunately, no traffic fatalities have been reported as of 6 a.m., and the majority of crashes have involved only damaged vehicles and few injuries. However, disabled vehicle calls are increasing…these are vehicles that get stuck or slide off a road but do not qualify as a “crash.” So…we still have vehicles attempting to drive in adverse and treacherous road conditions.

From 8:00 p.m. Wednesday (Jan. 3) through 5:00 a.m. Thursday (Jan. 4), the most traffic crashes and disabled vehicles calls for service have occurred within the Virginia State Police Chesapeake Division:

Division I–Richmond (Metro Richmond/Northern Neck/Tri-Cities)
Traffic Crashes=72
Disabled Vehicles=22
Total VSP emergency calls for service responded to: 123

Division V-Chesapeake (Hampton Roads/Tidewater/Eastern Shore/Williamsburg/Franklin/Emporia)
Traffic Crashes=101
Disabled Vehicles 74
Total VSP emergency calls for service responded to: 212

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Check out blizzard conditions in Virginia Beach with Makenzie Walter!

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From Dominion Energy:

The blizzard is
taking its toll on Hampton Roads and Northern NC and our Dominion Energy
equipment.  As of 7 a.m., more than 63,000 customers have been affected with
38,700 still without power.  That includes several critical
customers.  The biggest trouble has been in Virginia Beach where more than
40,000 customers have had power outages with nearly 30,000 still in the dark.
We appreciate everyone’s patience as our crews work as quickly and safely as
possible in this severe weather conditions.

Report and
check outages at Dominion Energy.com, or call 1-866-DOM-HELP.  That’s
1-866-366-4357

Please also report downed power lines asap and stay at least 30 feet away of
anything touching them.

 Estimated Times
of Restoration will be established once the event passes, but at this time we
do not anticipate this to be a multiday event. Virginia Beach is the hardest
hit office 23,500 customers without service at 230 work locations since
12:30am. Most of the outages we have responded to so far have been caused by
tree limbs on the line due to the high winds.

 In addition,
around 3:00AM we lost power to more than 16,000 customers in our Elizabeth City
and Outer Banks offices.  Crews are on the scene working to make repairs.
We also have more than 4,000 customers affected in our Gloucester office.

 We will dispatch,
patrol and respond throughout the duration of this storm. We do have
restrictions that prohibit putting the aerial lifts in the air, but that’s
depends on the type of bucket. The ranges are between 35-45 MPH of
sustained
winds. Our crews are well aware of these restrictions. Their first priority is
personal and public safety. 

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Sentara Healthcare
Operations
 (Thursday, January 4, 2018):

All Sentara hospitals and ERs are operating around the clock.

All Sentara Medical Group (SMG) practices in south Hampton Roads, on the Peninsula and in northeastern North Carolina are closed today. Patients are being contacted to reschedule appointments. A message is being sent to Sentara MyChart subscribers. Callers to SMG practices will reach a voicemail message.

Sentara free-standing 24-hour emergency departments at Sentara Independence in Virginia Beach, Sentara BelleHarbour in Suffolk and Sentara Port Warwick in Newport News are open.

Velocity Urgent Care Centers (formerly Sentara Urgent Cares) plan a 12:00PM opening, but that plan is being reassessed this morning.

Both Sentara PACE sites in Norfolk and Portsmouth are closed today.

For latest weather information go to http://www.sentara.com/weather

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Here are some tips on how to stay safe in the cold weather:

As winter grips the region, here’s how to stay safe in the bitter cold
With the snow and ice coming, walking around can get tricky

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N.C. Gov. Roy Cooper says three dead in winter storm

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From Virginia State Police:

As of 11:20 a.m., Thursday…

Richmond Division troopers are responding to 11 reported traffic crashes and 2 disabled vehicle calls.

Chesapeake Division troopers are responding to 4 reported traffic crashes and 22 disabled vehicle calls.

We want to remind Virginians to please call 511 or go to http://www.511virginia.org
for road conditions and not 911 or #77. We need to keep emergency lines
open for emergency calls.

 We are still asking Virginians to delay their travel until later today. But, if you MUST travel…then please take the following safety precautions:

·         Clear off ALL snow and ice from your vehicle – windows, roof, trunk and
lights            

·         Add extra time to reach travel destination

·         Slow speed for road conditions

·         Increase driving distances between vehicles for increased stopping distance

·         Buckle up and don’t drive distracted

·         MOVE OVER for all stopped emergency vehicles, highway vehicles and tow trucks.

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JAMESTOWN-SCOTLAND
FERRY SCHEDULE TEMPORARILY MODIFIED DUE TO WINTER STORM

Schedule changes
in effect through Friday morning, Jan. 5

 

SURRY – The Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) is running the
Jamestown-Scotland Ferry twice an hour due to the winter storm. The ferry is
scheduled to depart on the hour from Surry County and on the half-hour from
Jamestown through 5 a.m. Friday, Jan. 5. The ferry is currently running at
reduced capacity due to wind conditions. Service will increase to two boats
when conditions improve.  

 

For updates on ferry service, motorists can call the ferry hotline at
1-800-VA-FERRY. Motorists are also encouraged to visit
http://www.511virginia.org , call 511, download Virginia’s free 511 mobile app
or listen to Highway Advisory Radio (HAR) 1680 AM or call the Traffic
Information Line at 757-361-3016 for current traffic and travel information.

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ECPPS will be closed for students on Friday,
January 5th
. Friday will be an annual leave day for staff. Please stay
safe and warm.

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HAMPTON
ROADS, Va. (Jan. 4, 2018) — Spring classes at Tidewater Community College will
start on Wednesday, Jan. 10, because of the winter storm affecting Hampton
Roads.

Spring
classes were scheduled to begin Monday, Jan. 8. But now, classes scheduled for
Monday, Jan. 8, and Tuesday, Jan. 9, are canceled.

All
TCC campuses and locations will remain closed Friday,
Saturday and Sunday, Jan. 5-7, with all activities canceled. Current and
prospective students can still register for TCC classes online,
and they can get assistance by emailing info@tcc.edu.

All
campuses will reopen Monday, Jan. 8, to help students register for 16-, 12- and
eight-week classes. Special enrollment hours next week will be:

  • Monday,
    Jan. 8: 1 to 7:30 p.m.
  • Tuesday,
    Jan. 9: 8:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m.

In
addition, a Special Enrollment Day will be held Saturday, Jan. 13, from 10 a.m.
to 2 p.m. on all campuses.

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Naval Station Norfolk Closed Friday; Only Essential
Personnel Report Tomorrow

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Old Dominion University is closed and will remain closed Friday and Saturday. All activities and events are cancelled at all University
locations. 

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Portsmouth City Offices and facilities are closed today and will be closed on Friday, January 5th.

All Thursday and Friday trash, recycling, and bulk collections are cancelled for this week.

Currently in the City of Portsmouth, we have about 10 to over 14 inches of snow throughout the city. At 11 a.m., with snow still falling and blowing, roads have been quickly re-covered with snow after snow plow efforts.

Public Works will continue to work around the clock to clear bridges, primary roads, and streets leading to fire stations and hospitals. As of 7 p.m. yesterday, the crews began12 hour shift rotations and the new shift started at 7 a.m. today. In addition to the city’s snow plows and staff, the city also has VDOT snow plows and staff working to clear our roads.

Residents are urged to stay off the roads for their safety and to allow crews to work to clear them. There have been about 30 crashes and over 20 stranded vehicles left by drivers on main roads. Residents are venturing out and are getting stuck and are abandoning their vehicles and these vehicles are impeding snow plow operations. Please heed the warnings of public safety officials and stay off the roads at this time.

Currently there are eight residential power outages in the city and they are in the Churchland area.

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Virginia Beach, VA – Jan. 4, 2018 – All City offices and facilities will remain closed for business on Friday, Jan. 5. The City continues to operate under Essential Operating Conditions. This means the City is performing only essential functions involving public safety and public infrastructure. Please stay tuned for further changes.

The Virginia Beach Circuit Court, the Virginia Beach Circuit Court Clerk’s Office and the Virginia Beach Commonwealth’s Attorney’s Office will also be closed, and visitation for inmates in the Virginia Beach Correctional Center has been canceled for Friday.

A shelter is open at Landstown High School, located at 2001 Concert Drive. The Virginia Beach departments of Public Health and Human Services are staffing the shelter. Make sure to consider steps to take to prevent burst or frozen pipes when no one is home, like shutting off water at main valve or leaving water dripping.
Wintry weather conditions continue to impact trash and recycling collection. Curbside collections will not occur on Friday, Jan. 5 for the City of Virginia Beach. Trash and recycling cart collection will resume as road conditions allow. Collections will begin with areas not serviced Wednesday, Jan. 3, normal Thursday collection areas, and continuing with each area until collections for the week are completed. Residents are asked to leave trash and recycling carts at the curb until they are serviced. Normal yard debris and bulk item collections are suspended for the week of Jan. 3 and will resume next week. The Landfill and Resource Recovery Center will operate on the same schedule as other City facilities and offices. If you have any questions please call 385-4650, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., or visit http://www.vbgov.com/wastemgt.
Need Help Shoveling Snow? Or Want to Help?
Virginia Beach residents who need assistance shoveling snow from their home, driveway or residential area and do not have the resources to do it on their own may reach out to Operation Blessing International’s Snow Buddy program. To request assistance, call 757-284-9183. Priority will be given to people who are elderly, sick, disabled, single moms and patients needing to make it to medical appointments/treatment, and assistance will be based on volunteer availability. Interested in Volunteering? Call Operation Blessing at (757) 793-1837.
We will keep you informed. Please follow the latest information on Facebook and Twitter twitter.com/cityofvabeach, or call VB311 Citizen Services by dialing 311 within the city limits, or visit VBgov.com for online assistance. Winter storm emergency preparedness information and all news releases are available at vbgov.com/residents/emergency-preparedness/Pages/winter-storm.aspx. Look for the hashtag #GraysonVB on social media. Please remember to call 911 for true emergencies only. For other inquiries 24/7, please call 385-5000 for non-emergencies and 311 for City information.

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Latest
update from the City of Norfolk:

Norfolk Public Work
crews completed a shift change at 7pm.  Crews continue to work round the clock to clear roads.

Primary routes – 65% passable.  Some cleared down to pavement – most have layer of hard-packed snow and ice.

30 City and VDOT plows working

91 loads of snow hauled to Harbor Park from downtown

In the next 12 hours:

Crews will focus on clearing intersections and turn lanes along primary routes.  Will work to widen primary routes from curb to curb.

If completed, crews will shift to secondary routes.

Overnight temperatures will make it impossible to clear hard-packed snow and ice from roads.

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Latest update from the City of Norfolk:

Norfolk Public Work crews completed a shift change at 7pm.  Crews continue to work round the clock to clear roads.

Primary routes – 65% passable.  Some cleared down to pavement – most have layer of hard-packed snow and ice.

30 City and VDOT plows working

91 loads of snow hauled to Harbor Park from downtown

In the next 12 hours:

Crews will focus on clearing intersections and turn lanes along primary routes.  Will work to widen primary routes from curb to curb.

If completed, crews will shift to secondary routes.

Overnight temperatures will make it impossible to clear hard-packed snow and ice from roads.