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December 17, 2010 Published in 2010 In Review, EcoNews, Top Stories

Looking A Lot Like Christmas

City Hall, Thursday, December 16, 2010. (Photo: James Cullum)

City Hall, Thursday, December 16, 2010. (Photo: James Cullum)

As snowstorms go, yesterday’s was minor, leaving 1.5 inches on the ground at Washington Ronald Reagan National Airport. It did result in public schools closing early and the cancellation of many evening events, including an Alexandria School Board Meeting, which has not yet been rescheduled.

At 4pm yesterday, “The roads group had 30 trucks out (19 City, 11 contractor) in all 11 zones,” according to a memo from Yon Lambert, Deputy Director of Operations for Transportation and Environment Services for the City of Alexandria. “We were still focused on primary (red) routes although we had selectively addressed Secondary (blue) routes related to school bus routes and Fire/Police calls. We will notify the Webteam when all primary routes are passable and we have moved to secondary routes. T&ES and its contractors are working a 12-hour shift until 7 pm and will have a full crew coming in for relief to work 7 pm to 7 am. The nighttime crews will address the tail end of evening rush and focus on schools for Friday’s opening.

“The pedestrian group continues to focus on school sidewalks and rec centers. They are working a 12-hour shift until 7 pm, continuing to focus on schools and rec centers then moving onto Metro sidewalks. They will come back with a full crew again Friday.

“The facilities group is also working a 12-hour shift and will stay as late as they need to complete their objectives. Facilities has hit the 24-hour facilities three times already and will return before the end of the day. They will also continue working on Friday as needed” said Lambert.

By this morning, Alexandria work crews had treated all primary and secondary roadways and 75% of all roads are passable. City crews are currently treating roads and will continue to respond to changing weather conditions. Drivers are advised to use caution when driving and be prepared for slippery road conditions. You can check the plowing priority of a road or report primary and secondary roadway problems on the City’s Snow Report website. To report a weather-related road condition, call 703.746.4488.

City residents and business owners must clear snow and ice from all paved sidewalks abutting their property within 24 hours of the end of the snowfall, as required during a Level 1 storm. Failure to do so may result in the City having the work done and charging the cost to the property owner, or fining the property owner $50.

The National Weather Service is calling for a 50% chance of snow on Saturday night and a 40% chance on Sunday. “High pressure will influence the mid-Atlantic region today through Saturday,” according to the National Weather Service website. An area of low pressure is forecasted to develop off the southeast coast and pass east of the area Sunday. After high pressure builds into early next week… a weak upper disturbance may impact the region Tuesday into Wednesday. Colder then normal temperatures will persist into next week.”