Archive by Author | Fairfax County Emergency Information

4 Things to Know After the Snow

Posted 2:46 p.m.

The bulk of the snow is over for our area, but a few more inches may be possible this evening. We’ve shared information today and we simply want to recap these key topics with you as we head toward the evening:

  1. VDOT: Travel Conditions Remain Hazardous // VDOT Snow Plow Map
  2. 8 Snow Shoveling Safety Tips
  3. Cleared Fire Hydrants Matter When Seconds Count
  4. Keep Emergency Routes Clear

In the meantime, stay safe and enjoy the snow if you like the white stuff. Tell us what you’re seeing in your neighborhood: amount of snow, number of snow men, snow angels and igloos, and stories of snow shoveling brigades!

For additional updates, follow us on Twitter at @fairfaxcounty. For more resources, visit our winter weather page.

Cleared Fire Hydrants Matter When Seconds Count

Posted 1:14 p.m.

If you’re out shoveling snow, please take some time to clear fire hydrants. Seconds count if a fire breaks out, so a cleared fire hydrant will make a significant difference. Clear a three-foot radius around hydrants. There’s a lot of snow, so it may be tempting to move snow from around your car or sidewalk to any open space, but please keep hydrants clear. Our firefighters thank you in advance!

clear fire hydrants

VDOT: Travel Conditions Remain Hazardous; Stay Off Roads

Posted 12:40 p.m.

From our friends at the Virginia Department of Transportation:

The Virginia Department of Transportation continues to advise motorists to stay off roads in Northern Virginia today. Snow, sleet and refreeze throughout the afternoon will cause a wide range of road conditions. 4,000 trucks are making headway plowing interstates, major roads and neighborhood streets simultaneously.

“We urge drivers to stay off roads while conditions are still changing,” said Branco Vlacich, VDOT’s Northern Virginia district maintenance engineer. “It is imperative to the safety of drivers as well as our snow crews.”

On the roads:

  • Interstates are mostly clear and wet. Primary roads are partially clear with some lanes open, and many secondary roads remain snow-covered. Roads that appear to be bare pavement may become slick from sleet and refreeze.
  • If stranded, keep vehicle lights on and avoid getting out of your vehicle. Call #77 (Virginia State Police) who will dispatch VDOT Safety Service Patrol. Call 911 in case of an emergency.

In neighborhoods:

  • Residents can enter their address at to see the status of plowing in their neighborhood and watch trucks as they travel their plow routes.
  • Crews will plow streets and sand hills, curves and intersections to provide traction. With this deep snow, roads will have an eight-to-ten foot path but not bare pavement.
  • Keep vehicles in driveways or on the odd-numbered side of the street to allow plows room to pass.
  • Wait until plow passes. When shoveling, leave the last few feet at the curb until the street is plowed. as the truck will push some snow back. Shovel to the right facing the road.

Stay informed:

Track VDOT Snow Plowing Efforts

Posted 12:19 p.m.

The Virginia Department of Transportation handles snow removal on most roads in Fairfax County. If you’re wondering about the status of plowing on major and secondary roads, check out VDOT’s snow plowing map.

VDOT Snow Removal Map

Keep Emergency Routes Clear of Vehicles

Posted 11:28 a.m.

Fairfax County’s emergency routes need to be open for first responders and snow removal efforts. If your vehicle is on one of these routes, please remove it ASAP.

If you’ve shoveled out your car, do NOT park it on an emergency route today or in the days to come.

The Fairfax County Police Department has authority to remove any vehicle that is stalled, stuck, parked or abandoned on an emergency route. The owner or operator of a vehicle that is moved will be responsible for the towing fee, as well as a fine.

List of Emergency Routes

Rt. 1 Yes Richmond Highway
Rt. 7 Yes Leesburg Pike
Rt. 28 Yes Sully Road
Rt. 29 Yes Lee Highway
Rt. 50 Yes Lee-Jackson Memorial Highway/Arlington Boulevard
Rt. 66 Yes Interstate
Rt. 95 Yes Interstate
Rt. 123 Yes Ox Road/Chain Bridge Road/Dolly Madison Boulevard
Rt. 193 Yes Georgetown Pike
Rt. 228 Dranesville Road (Rt. 7-Town of Herndon)
Rt. 235 Yes Mount Vernon Highway/Mount Vernon Memorial Highway
Rt. 236 Yes Little River Turnpike
Rt. 241 Yes North King’s Highway/Telegraph Road
Rt. 242 Gunston Road (River Rd.-Rt. 1)
Rt. 243 Nutley Street (Rt. 29-Town of Vienna)
Rt. 244 Yes Columbia Pike
Rt. 267 Yes Dulles Toll Road
Rt. 286 Yes Fairfax County Parkway
Rt. 289 Yes Franconia-Springfield Parkway
Rt. 309 Old Dominion Drive (Georgetown Pike-Rt. 123)
Rt. 395 Yes Interstate
Rt. 602 Yes Reston Parkway/Lawyers Road (Rt. 7-West Ox Road)
Rt. 606 Yes Baron Cameron Avenue (Rt. 7-Town of Herndon)
Rt. 608 West Ox Road (Rt. 29-Centreville Road)
Rt. 611 Yes Telegraph Road (Rt. 1-City of Alexandria)
Rt. 613 Yes Beulah Street/Van Dorn Street/Lincolnia Road/Sleepy Hollow Road/Wilson Boulevard
Rt. 617 Yes Backlick Road
Rt. 618 Yes Woodlawn Road
Rt. 620 Yes Braddock Road
Rt. 623 Yes Old Mount Vernon (Rt. 235-Rt. 235 loopback)
Rt. 626 Yes Sherwood Hall Lane
Rt. 628 Yes Parkers Lane/Collingwood Road
Rt. 629 Fort Hunt Road/Vernon View
Rt. 633 Yes South King’s Highway
Rt. 635 Hayfield Road (Franconia Springfield Parkway-Telegraph Road)
Rt. 636 Hooes Road (Fairfax County Parkway-Rt. 123)
Rt. 637 Newington Road (Telegraph Road-Loisdale Road)
Rt. 638 Yes Rolling Road (Rt. 95-Braddock Road)
Rt. 640 Yes Sydenstricker Road
Rt. 642 Yes Lorton Road (Rt. 123-Rt. 1)
Rt. 643 Yes Lee Chapel Road/Burke Center Parkway (Fairfax County Parkway south-Fairfax County Parkway north)
Rt. 644 Yes Franconia Road/Old Keene Mill Road
Rt. 645 Burke Lake Road/Clifton Road/Stringfellow Road (Braddock Rd.-Town of Clifton; Town of Clifton-Rt. 29; Rt. 29-Rt. 50; Rt. 50-Fairfax County Parkway)
Rt. 648 Yes Edsall Road
Rt. 649 Yes Annandale Road/Hummer Road/Ravensworth Road (City of Falls Church-Rt. 236)
Rt. 650 Yes Gallows Road/Annandale Road (Rt. 7-Rt. 236)
Rt. 652 Burke Road (Burke Lake Road-Rolling Road)
Rt. 655 Yes Shirley Gate Road
Rt. 657 Yes Centreville Road
Rt. 659 Union Mill Road (Rt. 620-Rt. 658; Rt. 29-New Braddock Road)
Rt. 662 Stone Road (Rt. 29-Braddock Road)
Rt. 665 Waples Mill Road/Fox Mill Road (Rt. 50-Rt. 657)
Rt. 673 Lawyers Road (Fox Mill Road-Town of Vienna)
Rt. 674 Yes Hunter Mill Road
Rt. 675 Yes Sunset Hills Road (Hunter Mill Rd.-Town of Herndon)
Rt. 699 Prosperity Avenue (Rt. 236-Rt. 29)
Rt. 703 Shreve Road/Haycock Road (Rt. 29-Westmoreland Street)
Rt. 710 Yes Wakefield Chapel Road
Rt. 738 Yes Old Dominion Drive (Rt. 123-Arlington County Line)
Rt. 744 Hilltop Road (Rt. 29-Prosperity Avenue)
Rt. 790 Alban Road (Rolling Rd.-Backlick)
Rt. 828 Wiehle Avenue (Reston Parkway-Sunrise Valley Dr.)
Rt. 1332 Huntington Avenue (Rt. 1-Telegraph Road)
Rt. 1510 Yes Beacon Hill Road/Belle View Boulevard
Rt. 2677 Frontier Drive (Franconia/Springfield Parkway-Franconia Road)
Rt. 4605 Yes Dorr Avenue
Rt. 5320 Sunrise Valley Drive
Rt. 5329 Yes South Lakes Drive
Rt. 5576 Yes Hilary Road
Rt. 6066 Yes Prosperity Avenue
Rt. 6197 Roberts Parkway (Burke Center Parkway-Guinea Road)
Rt. 6751 Monument Drive (West Ox Road-Government Center Parkway)
Rt. 7436 Government Center Parkway (Monument Drive-Forum Drive)
Rt. 7437 Yes Forum Drive
Rt. 7700 Yes Fair Lakes Parkway
Rt. 7783 New Braddock Road (Rt. 28-Union Mill Road)

Transportation Systems Still Impacted By Snow

Posted at 10:49 a.m.

In addition to treacherous roads, many area transportation services are impacted today.

PLEASE, stay off the roads so VDOT can plow the snow.

Here’s the latest bus, transit and airport information:

  • Fairfax Connector has suspended all service, but will reevaluate operations this afternoon.
  • Fastran will transport dialysis, chemotherapy, and radiation trips only. All other scheduled route services including: senior centers, adult day health care, Women’s Recovery Center, senior residence trips, and charter services are canceled.
  • Virginia Railway Express will not operate any train service on Thursday and offices are closed.
  • Metrobus service (all routes, all lines) is suspended until further notice. Metrorail remains open.
  • Runways at area airports are closed.

Jenni McCord from the Virginia Department of Transportation provides more information on snow removal:

Medical Personnel Needing Transportation

Posted 10:10 a.m.

Medical personnel in Fairfax County needing a ride to the hospital today should call our non-emergency number, 703-691-2131, TTY 711, to arrange transportation.

This service is only for Fairfax County residents/medical personnel that need to get to their hospital shifts.

Transportation is being provided by volunteers through Volunteer Fairfax.

8 Snow Shoveling Safety Tips

Posted 8:41 a.m.

snow shovelingAround a foot of snow has fallen across the county, so snow lovers are happy! It will continue to snow for a few more hours, but many of you will spend the day removing snow.

Shoveling snow can by physically demanding and can lead to injuries such as sprains and strains, but even more serious heart attacks. Please follow these safety tips when you go out in today’s wintry weather:

  1. If you or someone you are with begins to have chest discomfort, especially with one or more of the other signs of a heart attack, call 9-1-1 right away.
  2. If you have a history of heart disease do not shovel without your doctor’s okay.
  3. Shovel small amounts of snow at a time.
  4. Push the snow instead of lifting where possible. If you have a driveway, move snow to the opposite side of where a plow will push.
  5. Use proper form if lifting is necessary: keeping your back straight and lift with your legs.
  6. Avoid shoveling under snow and ice covered trees and roof lines due to possibly falling limbs, ice and snow.
  7. Take breaks while shoveling and do not overexert yourself, especially if you are inactive or over 40.
  8. Dress in layers and wear warm clothing, especially because wind chills will be dropping below zero.

As for sidewalks, the state and the county do not clear snow and ice from public walkways (sidewalks and trails). While not legally obligated, residents and businesses are asked to help keep sidewalks safe for pedestrians, people with disabilities, elderly and children when they return to school.

More in this short video:

Stay Off the Roads

Posted 7:47 a.m.

We’re seeing plenty of pictures on Twitter and video on TV stations with cars on the road. The roads are very treacherous right now, so please stay home and off the roads if possible. Allow VDOT plows and other emergency vehicles to get around safely.

Deputy County Executive for Public Safety Dave Rohrer shares a few tips in this short video:

County Trash Collection Suspended; Private Services Likely Affected

Posted 7:22 a.m.

Fairfax County Collection Customers: Trash and recycling collection service has been suspended on Thursday, Feb. 13. At this time, staff is monitoring road conditions in order to determine when it will be safe for service to resume. Please stay connected to this blog or the Fairfax County Collection Customers website for updated information. Questions may be directed to the Customer Service Center at 703-802-3322, TTY 711.

The impact of this morning’s snowfall will likely cause delays in trash collection service throughout Fairfax County. Residents should contact their trash and recycling collector directly for service schedule changes.

Fairfax County Recycling and Disposal Centers at the I-66 Transfer Station and the I-95 Landfill Complex are currently open as normally scheduled, but at this time, please stay off the roads.

County Encourages Preparedness Before Big Snow Storm

Posted at 3:30 p.m.

David McKernan, emergency management coordinator, encourages residents to get where they need to be before the worst of the approaching snow storm. He adds that Fairfax County agencies have been preparing and he offers several tips for residents to brace for the storm.


You also are reminded also that the Virginia Department of Transportation is responsible for plowing of roads in the county. VDOT has created a snow plow map where you can follow plowing progress as well as a road conditions map. If you see any issues or problems on area roadways, you are encouraged to call 1-800-FOR-ROAD to report any road issues to VDOT.

8 Things to Know for Upcoming Snow Storm

Posted 12:53 p.m.

As you’ve likely heard, the National Weather Service has issued a Winter Storm Warning from 8 p.m. Wednesday to 8 p.m. Thursday. Governor McAuliffe declared a state of emergency for the Commonwealth. The latest snowfall prediction map is here:

snowfall prection map; 8-10 inches for fairfax county

As the storm approaches, here are 8 things to know:

1.) Get Where You Need to Be Before the Weather Gets Bad: Snow is expected to start falling tonight around 8, so there’s still time to prepare.

2.) VDOT Snow Removal: The Virginia Department of Transportation is responsible for snow removal on most county roads. VDOT is aggressively pre-treating roads throughout Fairfax, Loudoun, Prince William and Arlington counties in advance of tonight’s heavy snow. By midnight, almost 4,000 trucks will be staged along interstates, major roads and neighborhood streets. You can visit to see the status of plowing in your neighborhood as the storm unfolds.

3.) Neighbors: Please check in on elderly or other housebound people you may know to make sure they have supplies.

4.) Hypothermia Prevention: If you see an unsheltered person who may be at risk of hypothermia, call the police non-emergency phone line at 703-691-2131, TTY 711.

5.) Pets: Don’t forget your pets — as conditions deteriorate, bring pets/companion animals inside; move other animals to sheltered areas with non-frozen drinking water. Our Animal Shelter is offering temporary, emergency housing for cats, dogs and small companion animals. If you or someone you know needs to utilize this service, contact the shelter at 703-830-1100, extension 2, or call the police non-emergency number at 703-691-2131, TTY 711.

6.) Fire Hydrants: Depending on how much snow we get, there may be a need to dig out fire hydrants. Please note their location near your home. If you’re able and if we get enough snow, please help dig out fire hydrants when the snow ends.

7.) Fill Your Car: If you have a car, fill your gas tank before the snow flies. Here’s more information on winterizing your vehicle.

8.) #ffxstorm: If you’re using Twitter, tell us what you see by using the hashtag #ffxstorm. This is a large storm affecting the northeast, so the more localized info the better! Follow us on Twitter at @fairfaxcounty.

Operating Status for Thursday, Jan. 23

Updated Jan. 22, 9:23 p.m.

Government, Schools and Courts
• Fairfax County Government offices are open, Thursday Jan. 23, however employees have been granted unscheduled leave. Emergency service personnel should report as scheduled.  Learn more about how the county executive decides operating status.
• Fairfax County Public Schools are closed, Thursday, Jan. 23. School Age Child Care (SACC) centers are closed.
• Circuit Court, General District Court and Juvenile and Domestic Relations District Court are all open Thursday, Jan. 23.

Parks, Community and Recreation and Community Centers  
• If you have questions about Park Authority facilities, contact the site directly, call the Parks inclement weather line at 703-324-8661, TTY 711, or visit
• For Department of Neighborhood and Community Services programs and events visit or call 703-324-4600, TTY 711.
• The Reston Community Center and the McLean Community Center may be affected by the inclement weather. Call RCC at 703-476-4500, TTY 711, or MCC at 703-790-0123, TTY 711, for their current operating status.

Transportation: Connector, Fastran  
• Fairfax Connector bus service may be affected by the inclement weather. Check the Connector Web page at for the current operating status.
• For information about FASTRAN, call 703-222-9764, press 8; TTY 711, or online at

• Library hours may be affected; call your local branch before visiting. For branch phone numbers, call 703-324-3100 or go to

Public Meetings
• View the public meetings calendar at for any potential cancellations of public meetings of Fairfax County Government Boards, Authorities or Commissions.

5 Things to Know: VDOT Road Snow Removal Update

Posted 5:22 p.m.

From our friends at the Virginia Department of Transportation in Northern Virginia:

Virginia Department of Transportation crews and 4,000 pieces of equipment continue working in Fairfax, Loudoun, Prince William and Arlington counties. Crews are focusing on plowing and treating during the height of the storm expected from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m., and will turn to treating icy spots overnight due to extreme low temperatures.

If you need to be out, here’s what you need to know:

  1. The height of the storm is expected during rush hour, from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. Motorists should monitor road conditions closely and avoid driving if possible.
  2. Chemicals used to treat roads become ineffective under 20 degrees. Tonight, crews will continue to plow roads, as well as treat ice with a mixture of salt and liquid magnesium chloride on interstates, and a treated sand mix on primary and local roads.
  3. Bridge pavement temperatures are expected to be as low as four degrees tomorrow morning. Drivers should use extreme caution on bridges, ramps, overpasses and other areas prone to freezing.
  4. High winds will cause snow to drift back into roadways and refreeze.
  5. Crews will continue plow subdivisions overnight and treat icy spots.

Get More Information

Animal Shelter Providing Emergency Home for Pets in the Cold

Posted 4:45 p.m.

puppies outsideBecause the freezing temperatures predicted over the next few days may be deadly to pets, the Animal Shelter is offering temporary, emergency housing for cats, dogs and small companion animals. If you or someone you know needs to utilize this service, contact the shelter at 703-830-1100, extension 2, or call the police non-emergency number at 703-691-2131, TTY 711

For all pet owners, don’t forget your pets — bring pets/companion animals inside; move other animals to sheltered areas with non-frozen drinking water. Read some more tips to prepare your pets.


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