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FCPS: School Now Canceled on Thursday

by Karen Goff January 21, 2016 at 6:20 am 5 Comments

Snow Day in RestonFairfax County Schools will be closed on Thursday, Jan. 21.

That’s a departure from the announcement the school system made Wednesday night, when it said there would be a two-hour delay after a small amount of snow fell during rush hour and into the evening.

There was significant re-freeze overnight and the roads are not in good condition this morning, according to DC-area forecasters and traffic-watchers.

FCPS’ closure also means the following are canceled:

  • extracurricular activities
  • interscholastic contests and games
  • team practices
  • field trips
  • middle school after-school programs
  • professional learning and training courses
  • adult and community education classes
  • recreation programs and community use by outside groups not affiliated with FCPS
  • School age child care (SACC) centers are closed.

The Virginia Department of Transportation is urging motorists who must head out to use extreme caution, as low ground temperatures overnight mean that even treated roads have refrozen. ”

“Slow down, allow extra time to destinations, and take extra care on areas prone to freezing such as bridges, ramps and secondary roads,” VDOT said in a statement.

About 500 trucks worked through the night to clear extremely treacherous conditions, said VDOT. Crews will remain on duty through the morning rush hour to continually treat slick roads.

Drivers are reminded to check www.511virginia.org for road conditions and to follow @VaDOTNOVA on Twitter.

Traffic officials are hoping to avoid a repeat of Wednesday night’s commute, where many people said it took hours to make a what is usually a 30-minute commute. Major arteries such as I-66, Route 123, and I-495 were jammed, leaving drivers frozen and frustrated.

Empty shelves at Reston Trader Joe's Wednesday afternoon/Courtesy Amanda Andere

And this is all just a warm-up — or cold-up, even though that’s not a phrase — to the big storm expected to hit Reston and Northern Virginia Friday night and Saturday. The National Weather Service has issued a Blizzard Watch, saying the storm — expected to begin Friday afternoon —  could have two feet of snow, high winds and power outages.

Restonians did their usual mass dash for storm necessities beginning Wednesday, reporting long lines and empty shelves at local grocery stores.

Reston Now will give you more information on updates forecasts and additional closings for Friday’s storm as it gets closer.

Photo: Top, Snow in Reston/2014 file photo; Bottom, empty shelves at Reston Trader Joe’s Wednesday afternoon/Courtesy Amanda Andere

  • Ming the Merciless

    FCPS calls this the “we haven’t used a snow day, and it was a short week anyway so what the heck” day off.

    • Arielle in NoVA

      Maybe, maybe not. Ice is a real problem, especially when the buses and student drivers are added into the equation. A lot of major roads in the area were horrible last night (Carmageddon II – see this FB post: https://www.facebook.com/DCMETROSKYWARN/photos/a.378094375543210.94780.378054778880503/1084789674873673/?type=3&theater from National Capital Area Skywarn Spotters); FCPS might have been worried about that sort of situation on the local roads today.

    • Hedley Lamarr

      I am sure FCPS just doesn’t want to get sued when a school buss hits a patch of ice. Maybe Ken Plum can work a law that would shield the school system from frivolous lawsuits that are related to commuting in bad weather.

  • Cold up

    I think the opposite of warmup is cool down but I may be wrong, been wrong before.

  • LakeNewportLady

    It should have been a 2 hour delay at most. Ridiculous. We all just had to go out with our kids and find stuff to do. No one had to stay indoors today.


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