The weather system that brought mixed precipitation to the area Thursday and Friday has moved
southeast of the region, but a more significant winter storm is expected overnight Friday, according to the National Weather Service in Blacksburg.
The expected storm with its significant accumulations of ice – perhaps more than 1/4 inch of ice accumulation, and some sleet accumulations – prompted the NWS to issue a Winter Weather Advisory. If the forecast ice accumulations materialize, widespread damage to trees and power lines and widespread power outages may be expected.
Travel in some areas could become extremely hazardous to near impossible Saturday morning, according to the NWS.
With the additional freezing rain expected to impact the region, crews and contractors with the Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) are preparing to respond to possible icy roads and downed trees. VDOT continues to encourage drivers to monitor forecasts and avoid travel during icy conditions.
Areas where ice may form first include roads in the mountains and higher elevations, elevated surfaces, bridges, overpasses and cooler spots. A difference in just a few degrees of air or ground temperatures will determine if ice accumulates on roadways.
Motorists are advised to:
*Adjust travel plans around winter weather;
*Monitor forecasts today and into the weekend;
*Be alert to changing conditions;
*Pay particular attention to bridges, overpasses, curves, shaded areas, mountainous areas, cooler spots and elevated surfaces that may become icy or snow-covered before other areas.
Travelers can get real-time information on road conditions, traffic incidents and congestion on Virginia roads by using VDOT’s 511 free mobile app or the www.511Virginia.org website and phone system.