Archive by Author | Fairfax County Emergency Information

Food Safety for the Big Game

Posted at 2:30 p.m.

M
any of us will gather around the television on Sunday to watch the big game. And more than likely we’ll have lots of food and beverages to enjoy the action between the New England Patriots and the Atlanta Falcons.

But there are several things you need to remember to ensure that you, your family and any friends you’ve invited over for a game party stay safe with any food that you’re serving.

If you’re having chicken wings — a football fan’s favorite — take a temperature of your wings and place them on a clean plate covered in paper toweling. Use a clean food thermometer to check the internal temperature; for food safety the temp should be 165°F. You should measure several wings before you finish cooking each batch. Another option, of course, is just buy a platter of wings from your favorite restaurant.

For this weekend’s game, or any time you’re in the kitchen, remember these four simple steps: Clean, Separate, Cook and Chill.

food safety for the big game

Most importantly, make sure to keep hot food hot and cold food cold.

  • Hot foods must have a heat source to keep them at or warmer than 140°F.
  • Cold foods should be kept on ice to remain at a safe temperature at or below 40°F.
  • Perishable foods left out longer than two hours should be discarded and replenished with fresh servings.

For more on food safety — and what it means to clean, separate, cook and chill — watch this video with Ron Campbell from the Health Department.

Other Tips:

  • Wash your hands with soap and warm water for 20 seconds to avoid spreading bacteria to your towels.
  • Never reuse paper towels. This product is for single use only. When used multiple times, bacteria can find their way onto the towel and hitch a ride around the kitchen.
  • Kitchen towels build up bacteria after multiple uses. To keep the bacteria from getting the upper hand, you should wash your kitchen towels frequently in the hot cycle of your washing machine.

Enjoy the game and the food — and stay safe!

 

Wind Advisory in Effect Until 7 p.m.

Posted at 1:40 p.m.

A National Weather Service wind advisory is in effect until 7 p.m. this evening. A wind advisory means that winds of 45 to 55 mph are expected. Winds this strong can make driving difficult, especially for high profile vehicles.

East winds 25 mph, with gusts to 45 mph, are expected through early evening tonight. These strong winds may blow down limbs, trees and power lines. Scattered power outages are to be expected.

Our fire and rescue department reports that from 6 a.m. to 1 p.m. today, units have already responded to 21 calls for reports of downed power lines.

Downed power lines can be deadly. Always assume a downed power line is live and avoid going near it or anything in contact with it.

downed-and-dangerous-downed-power-line-safety

Graphic courtesy of the Electrical Safety Foundation International (ESFI).

 

 

Winter Weather Advisory in Effect at Midnight

Posted at 4:30 p.m.

Winter Weather Advisory

A winter weather advisory is in effect from midnight tonight until 6 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 14. A winter weather advisory means that periods of snow, sleet and freezing rain will cause travel difficulties. Be prepared for slippery roads and limited visibilities; use caution while driving.

Snow, sleet and freezing rain, with snow accumulation of up to 1 inch along with around a trace of ice is possible affecting the area late tonight through tomorrow.

For more winter preparedness and safety information, visit our winter weather guide.

VDOT Crews Prep for Weekend Weather

Posted at 2:15 p.m.

The Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) reports this afternoon that they have crews and contract crews preparing for plummeting temperatures and a gamut of winter weather forecast this weekend for Northern Virginia.

Crews began pretreating roads yesterday and will be staged roadside in the region by 10 p.m. tonight. Throughout Fairfax, Loudoun, Prince William and Arlington* counties (*Arlington maintains own secondary roads) crews treat about 5,200 lane miles of interstates and other high-volume roads with liquid magnesium chloride or brine when conditions allow for winter weather. Learn more about Northern Virginia’s snow preparations.

Drives are asked to monitor weather reports for the latest updates to avoid being on the road during periods of limited visibility or icy conditions.

Weather Forecast

weather forecast Jan. 13-16, 2017

The National Weather Service predicts a slight chance of rain, snow and sleet between 9 p.m. and midnight tonight, then snow, freezing rain and sleet likely. Tonight will be mostly cloudy with a low around 31° Fahrenheit and a 60 percent chance of precipitation. Little or no ice accumulation and little or no snow and sleet accumulation are expected.

On Saturday, snow, freezing rain and sleet are in the forecast before noon, then rain or freezing rain is likely with a high near 33°. New ice accumulation of less than a 0.1 of an inch is possible.

For severe weather alerts on your mobile phone or by email, be sure to sign up for Fairfax Alerts.

Fairfax Connector

Fairfax Connector reminds riders that during inclement weather, heavy snow or icy conditions, service may be reduced, modified or suspended to poor travel conditions. If road conditions become unsafe, icy or snow packed, service may be suspended on a route-by-route basis, or system-wide.

Take one of these 3 easy steps to stay informed of operating status, service changes and detours before, during and after a winter weather event.

  1. Sign-up for text and/or email alerts through Fairfax Alerts by subscribing to “Fairfax Connector Passenger Information.”
  2. Follow Fairfax Connector on Twitter and Facebook.
  3. Call Fairfax Connector customer service at 703-339-7200, TTY 703-339-1608; Monday – Friday, 5 a.m. to 10 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday, 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. Se habla Español.

Listen to OEM Coordinator Seamus Mooney on the County Conversation podcast

For additional winter preparedness and safety information, be sure to visit our winter weather guide.

Road Crews Staging for Wintry Afternoon/Evening Commute

Posted 2:08 p.m. // From the Virginia Department of Transportation:

Drivers are advised to avoid a potentially difficult wintry commute by following changing weather conditions closely today, and to plan to be off the roads as snow falls during the afternoon rush through Friday morning.

VDOT crews are finishing pre-treatment of critical locations along interstates and high-volume routes in Northern Virginia today, and will begin to stage about 1,125 pieces of equipment along roadsides this afternoon to be in place for rush hour.

Once snow moves into the area, crews will treat roadways with salt and sand to aid melting and improve traction. Trucks can lower the plow blade to push snow once about two inches have accumulated on the road surface.

Pavement temperatures are expected to remain low over the next few days, so drivers should expect potential for continued refreeze and slick conditions, even where crews have treated.

Drivers are asked to:

  • Monitor weather to stay informed of the latest timing and intensity along your travel routes
  • Adjust commutes to avoid driving during the storm—try to leave early this afternoon and delay trips in the morning until conditions improve. Allow plenty of extra travel time.
  • Reduce speeds; do not overdrive conditions and use headlights
  • Take it slow on bridges, ramps, and overpasses, and other known trouble spots
  • Ensure gas tanks and windshield fluid tanks are full, and take time to update your car’s emergency kit

In addition to the VDOT information above, Fairfax County Public Schools have cancelled evening activities:

For more information about snow, roads, cold and more, view our Fairfax County Winter Weather Guide.