Virginia Drivers Stranded On Interstate For Hours In Freezing Temperatures
Drivers are stranded on Interstate 95 in the Fredericksburg area of eastern Virginia, many since Monday. The vehicles are stuck on sections of the highway in the 50-mile stretch from Richmond to Washington, D.C. The Virginia Department of Transportation said that the jam owes to the severe weather storm in the area, and a few disabled trucks that block the snowy and icy road.
Sen. Tim Kaine (D-Virginia) is among those stranded. He tweeted about the situation at 8:30 a.m. on Tuesday, writing, “I started my normal 2 hour drive to DC at 1pm yesterday. 19 hours later, I’m still not near the Capitol.”
I started my normal 2 hour drive to DC at 1pm yesterday. 19 hours later, I’m still not near the Capitol. My office is in touch with @VaDOT to see how we can help other Virginians in this situation. Please stay safe everyone. pic.twitter.com/Sz1b1hZJZ5
— Tim Kaine (@timkaine) January 4, 2022
He added that his office was communicating with the Department of Transportation “to see how we can help other Virginians in this situation.”
The motorists have been stranded in freezing temperatures, some since Monday morning.
VDOT said that authorities have closed off the jammed section and have been working to remove the disabled trucks and clear the road of ice, snow and downed trees. Workers are also trying to help motorists reach nearby interchanges.
The storm had dropped 14 inches of snow and left over 400,000 people without power. The power outages have also disabled traffic cameras along the traffic jam site.
Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam (D) tweeted informing viewers of the progress. He added, “In emergency message is going to all stranded drivers connecting them to support, and the state is working with localities to open warming shelters as needed.”
An emergency message is going to all stranded drivers connecting them to support, and the state is working with localities to open warming shelters as needed.
While sunlight is expected to help @VaDOT clear the road, all Virginians should continue to avoid 1-95.
— Governor Ralph Northam (@GovernorVA) January 4, 2022
Kelly Hannon, spokesperson for the VDOT Fredericksburg District, said, “We know people have been stopped for extraordinary time periods leading up to these closure areas, but we are clearing trucks one by one to break through this blockage, and we will get to each driver and restore traffic flow.”
Drivers have been told to avoid the interstate, but also to avoid local roads due to the many traffic lights disabled in the power outages.
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