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Va. gov.: Stay off roads

Airports | Amtrak | Buses | Capital Weather Gang | D.C. snow emergency | Plowing plans | Rails | Snow removal | Live traffic

Gov. Bob McDonnell urged Virginians today to stay off the roads as a dangerous snowstorm continues to make landfall leaving more than two feet of snow in parts of the state.

"The thing we would like to ask everybody to do, obviously, is to please stay off the roads,'' he told reporters on a conference call this afternoon. "There are dangerous conditions that will exist for days now in Virginia even after plowing because of the very cold weather we are anticipating at night and the refreezing."

McDonnell declared a state of emergency Wednesday. About 500 members of the National Guard are assisting state officials with the storm.

"The impact of the storm will be felt for quite some time,'' he said. "It's going to take quite some time to abate...This is a time for the people of Virginia to work together and help one another. Be good neighbors. But mostly use their common sense and stay off the roads. Enjoy the Super Bowl if they have power tomorrow night. But don't go out tomorrow night unless there is an absolute emergency."

McDonnell said most snow has fallen in Northern Virginia -- 33 inches in Loudoun County, 25 inches in Fairfax County and 12 to20 inches up and down the I-81 corridor.

The storm "has certainly lived up to -- if not exceeded -- the potential for snowfall accumulation and dangerous conditions around the state,'' he said. "The accumulation has been historic in some parts of the state. It is fast approaching the highest of accumulation in the 103 years these records have been kept."

About 175,000 houses remain without power, but McDonnell said he expects that number to increase. The Virginia State Police have responded more than 3,000 calls.
Most interstates are passable, but I-64, I-81 and I-95 will need to be plowed a third time.
-- Anita Kumar

By Michael Bolden  |  February 6, 2010; 3:34 PM ET
Categories:  Advisories , Weather , highways  | Tags: VDOT, snow, snowstorm  
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Why is Bob McDonnell telling us what to do? No more govmnt interference in our lives!

Posted by: vmrg1974 | February 6, 2010 5:54 PM | Report abuse

You mean like by plowing? Govt. stop plowing our roads! We should let nature take its course.

Posted by: charodon | February 6, 2010 6:24 PM | Report abuse

I agree. The governor should tell not be telling people to stay off the roads. Let people go out and slide into ditches and wreck their cars and possibly get killed. That would be much better than having government tell us what to do.

Posted by: chimayy | February 6, 2010 7:42 PM | Report abuse

What if we do go out? Will Bob charge me a toll (which btw is never considered a "tax")

Bob, please march us to our inevitable future: New Jersey.

Posted by: Please_Fix_VAs_Roads | February 7, 2010 12:15 AM | Report abuse

I do not believe the government should be telling people that they can or cannot go out. Especially because the government really has no way of knowing who needs to be out and who doesn't...they do not have a master list of all "essential" employees at every business, they have no idea who is running low on food or medicine, who's wife is about to go into labor, etc. I do believe that the government should be telling people that if we are thinking of going out, we are responsible for ourselves, and we have to make the decision based on current road conditions, our vehicle, and the nature of the trip. And that if we crash, we are on our own for extended periods of time, because emergency personnel are busy.

Unfortunately, its much easier for the government to just say "stay off the roads if you don't have to be out". But unless he is saying he will ticket and arrest those who are out and about (which he is not), he is essentially not saying we can't be out, just that we shouldn't be out without good reason. That is not government interference.

Posted by: thetan | February 7, 2010 2:46 AM | Report abuse

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