Fairfax County Police Officer Shoots Woman — A woman was taken to the hospital in critical condition yesterday (Monday) after a Fairfax County police officer fired their weapon and shot her during a confrontation at a group home in Springfield. Police say they responded to the 8000 block of Gosport Lane by a disturbance call about a woman reportedly assaulting people. [The Washington Post]
Former Fairfax County Police Chief to Head Capitol Police — J. Thomas Manger, who served as Fairfax County’s chief of police from 1998 to 2004, will take over as chief of the U.S. Capitol Police in the wake of the Jan. 6 insurrection by supporters of former President Donald Trump. Manger will be named to the position following an extensive search, according to The Associated Press. [Patch]
Herndon Business Park Acquired — The San Francisco-based real estate investment company Shorenstein Properties LLC has acquired Monroe Business Center, a 19-acre site at 539 Herndon Parkway with seven office buildings. The property’s location near the future Herndon Metro station “provides Shorenstein with a rare opportunity to create a more mixed-use environment over time.” [PR Newswire]
Two Fire Department Personnel Positive for COVID-19 — Two personnel in the Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department are currently COVID-19 positive. 175 people in the department are known to have been infected by the novel coronavirus at some point during the pandemic. With cases increasing in the county, the department urged people to get vaccinated if they haven’t done so already. [FCFRD]
Photo via vantagehill/Flickr
Heat Turns Up in D.C. Area — Daytime temperatures are expected to stay in the mid-90s for much of this week, with a possible heat index of 100 to 110 degrees Fahrenheit through Thursday (July 1), according the the National Weather Service. Fairfax County says to stay hydrated, remain in shaded or air-conditioned locations as much as possible, and check on neighbors who may be vulnerable to the heat. [Fairfax County Government]
Unattended Candle Ignites Herndon House Fire — A small house fire in the 13000 block of Farthingale Drive in Herndon was started on Friday (June 25) by an unattended lit candle in the bedroom. The blaze was extinguished quickly, but it still displaced three people and resulted in about $20,000 in damages. [Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department]
Few Restrictions Anticipated for FCPS Fall Return — “Fairfax County Public Schools superintendent Scott Brabrand said he’s ready to get students back in schools, and said he thinks it will be pretty normal as far as precautions go… ‘Our planning assumptions include no social distancing in our classrooms,’ Brabrand said.” [WTOP]
Juneteenth Celebrated at Frying Pan Farm — “The Friends of Frying Pan Farm Park sponsored its inaugural Juneteenth Celebration on June 19 at Frying Pan Spring Meeting House on Centreville Road. While generally not open to the public, the integrity of the historic 230-year-old Meeting House and its adjoining springs, baptismal pond, grounds, and cemetery proved an appropriate location for the celebration.” [Reston Connection]
Updated at 2:25 p.m. — The gas leak at Reston Town Center has now stopped after the gas company “clamped the line,” the Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department reported at 1:20 p.m.
Updated at 12 p.m. — The gas leak situation at Reston Town Center is now stable, the Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department says, though it is estimated that it will take the gas company a couple of hours to secure the leak.
No injuries have been reported, and examinations of buildings in the vicinity did not reveal any gas leaking into structures, according to the department.
Earlier: A gas leak possibly related to utility work at Reston Town Center prompted multiple buildings to be evacuated this morning (Friday), a tipster told Reston Now.
A Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department spokesperson confirmed that units are currently on the scene in response to a gas leak involving a four-inch gas line.
The department has also confirmed that some buildings were evacuated as a precaution.
“Awaiting gas company to shut line down,” FCFRD said in a tweet. “Avoid area.”
Roads in the area of Market Street at the intersection with Explorer Street have been closed due to fire department activity, according to Fairfax Alerts. The alert says to “expect delays if traveling in the immediate area.”
Units on scene of a gas leak on Market Street at Explorer Street in Reston. Four-inch gas line involved. Some evacuations of buildings nearby as a pre-caution. Awaiting gas company to shut line down. Avoid area. #FCFRD #traffic pic.twitter.com/EuM3gx4VMF
— Fairfax County Fire/Rescue (@ffxfirerescue) June 25, 2021
David Taube contributed to this report.
Primary Voter Turnout Expected to Follow Pre-Pandemic Trends — “While tens of thousands of Virginians already voted early ahead of the primary election on Tuesday, the turnout for people casting ballots in person is expected to look more like it did before the coronavirus pandemic. ‘I suspect that the bulk of the voters will be voting tomorrow as they traditionally have,’ said Fairfax County General Registrar Scott Konopasek. [WTOP]
Public Housing Application Period Opens — “The Fairfax County Redevelopment and Housing Authority (FCRHA) is now accepting new tenant applications for selection to the Rental Assistance Demonstration (RAD) program waitlist. The RAD program, formerly known simply as “public housing,” provides 1,060 units of publicly owned housing to low-income households…Applications must be completed online between 8 a.m. on June 7 and 11:59 p.m. on June 13.” [Fairfax County Government]
Virginia Sees Overall Drop in Violent Crime — “Virginia saw a slight decrease in violent crime in 2020 compared to 2019, according to the state police’s annual crime report. The number of homicides in the state, however, increased by 23.4 percent. Across the state, there were 15,713 violent crimes reported in 2020 compared to 16,018 violent crimes in 2019, a 1.9 percent drop.” [Patch]
Reston Museum to Revisit Encounter with Former First Lady — “Join the Reston Historic Trust & Museum for a special all-virtual program on July 13, 2021 from 6-8 p.m. commemorating Lady Bird Johnson’s 1967 visit to Reston. Special guest Julia Sweig, author of Lady Bird Johnson: Hiding in Plain Sight, will provide insight into Lady Bird Johnson and her involvement in urban planning projects, democratic access to nature and more.” [Reston Historic Trust and Museum]
Fairfax County Fire Department Awarded — Fairfax County Fire Chief John Butler is a co-recipient of the Excellence in Virginia Fire Services Award from the 2020 Governor’s Fire Service Awards for helping launch a Field Available Component Transfusion Response (FACT R) program, which uses 9-1-1 resources to deliver blood transfusions to trapped individuals. A county firefighter was also named Career Firefighter of the Year. [FCFRD]
Photo via vantagehill/Flickr
A contractor who was injured while working on the roof of a home in Reston was rescued Monday evening.
According to the Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department, the man — who was repairing a roof at 1514 Park Glen Court — injured himself with a nail gun.
Fire and rescue crews lifted the man from the roof of the townhouse and transported him to a local hospital.
The incident happened around 6:22 p.m. A spokesperson for the fire department told Reston Now that the man’s injuries were not life-threatening.
Photos by Joel Shprentz
Roer’s Zoofari has reopened after a fire broke out that killed two beloved giraffes earlier this month.
The zoo at 1228 Hunter Mill Road started welcoming visitors again for walk and drive-through visits on Monday (March 15), according to their Facebook, a week after a fatal barn fire left giraffes Waffles and Belagin dead.
The zoo has posted a remembrance on the website for the two animals.
“Waffles has been the heart of Roer’s Zoofari for 5 years. As we grieve we can look back at his legacy he leaves behind,” it reads in part. “Rest in peace Waffles, you will never be forgotten.”
For Belgian, it notes that he was recently brought to the zoo as a companion for Waffles.
“Tragically his time here was cut short. But in his few weeks at Roer’s Zoofari, he uplifted the spirits of visitors and staff,” the remembrance says. “He helped make Waffles’ last days an absolute joy as they played in the sun.”
Areas, including the barn, remain blocked off as an investigation is still ongoing, zoo owner Vanessa Roer writes Reston Now in an email.
At 5:30 p.m. on March 8, zoo staff was contacted by Fairfax County fire dispatch, according to a statement on the zoo’s website.
Staff arrived and were able to rescue about 20 other animals. They could not reach the giraffes, who were trapped in their stalls in the barn.
The giraffes likely died of smoke inhalation, the statement says.
While no cause has yet to be officially determined, staff believe the fire resulted from a heater that was being used to keep animals warm overnight in the barn during cold temperatures.
About a third of the barn was destroyed.
Additionally, in recent days, a petition has been circulating to shut down the zoo. Currently, there’s about 550 signatures.
It cites the alleged mistreatment of animals and violation of the Animal Welfare Act as reasons. No evidence of such claims is offered.
There have been several notable incidents and controversies over the last decade at the zoo, many of which occurred prior to the current ownership taking over in 2016.
For decades, the zoo near Lake Fairfax was known as “Reston Zoo” but it was sold to Vanessa and Jacob Roer after several high-profile animal cruelty charges. This includes the zoo’s previous director pleaded guilty of drowning an injured wallaby.
At the time, Reston Zoo ownership chalked it up to mistakes, keeper error, and bad process.
Reston Now did send the petition to current zoo staff for comment but has yet to hear back as of publication.
Photo via Roer’s/Facebook
Although the blaze was brought under control, Waffles, a seven-year-old giraffe, and his companion, a giraffe that zoo owner Vanessa Roer acquired two weeks ago, were killed in the fire.
Staff at the zoo recently created a memorial outside the entrance of the zoo. People have been leaving flowers and balloons in memory of Waffles, a zoo-goer-favorite.
According to Roer, 20 other animals were rescued after the blaze destroyed nearly one-third of the barn.
‘Waffles was a favorite with our visitors and our team,’ Roer said. ‘We are heartbroken.’
A spokesperson for the Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department told Reston Now that an investigation on the cause of the fire and the extent of damages is underway.
Preliminarily, staff believe that the fire may have been caused by a heater used to keep animals warm in the barn overnight.
The zoo is closed until Friday.
Three macaws were taken to Leesburg Wild Animal Park Monday night after the zoo’s veterinarian ruled out any signs of smoke inhalation. All other animals were relocated inside the zoo.
Photo via Vanessa Roer
Flag Changes Not Recommended by County Planning Commission — The county’s planning commission recommended against changing regulations for flags and flagpoles. County staff had proposed specific regulations that would impose a new height limit on flagpoles, among other new regulations. [Reston Patch]
Reorganization Underway in County Fire Departments — The Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department has reorganized its operations bureau in order to improve daily operations. The move adds an eighth battalion and divides the county into two divisions. [FCFRD]
Spring Break Camp Registration Now Open — Reston Association is resuming its spring break camp from March 29 through April 2 this year. Sign ups are available online. [RA]
Photo via vantagehill/Flickr
Alcorn Seeks Intern — The Hunter Mill District Office is seeking a part-time summer intern to help with public service activities. The deadline to apply is March 1. [Fairfax County Government]
Reston House Fire Extinguished — A small fire broke out on the outside of a roof on the 11500 block of Greenwich Point in Reston yesterday evening. The fire was quickly extinguished and no injuries were reported. [Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department]
Late Night Thieves Target Minority Business Owners — Detectives in Fairfax County are investigating a series of overnight commercial burglaries at minority-owned businesses located in Alexandria, Annandale, Falls Church and Springfield in Virginia. [WTOP]
Photo by Marjorie Copson
New Vaccine Distribution Process In Effect — ” While local health districts are allowed flexibility in how doses are administered, roughly half of the available supply each week will be used for people 65 and older. The other half will be allocated for people eligible in the other categories.“ [Fairfax County Government]
Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department Partners with George Mason University — The department’s data analytics strategy management division partnered with the university to give students a chance to work with real world data from the community. Students studied the relationship between medications administered and procedures performed to distance from the receiving hospital. [FCFRD]
Warren Thompson Talks Growth for His Reston-based Hospitality Company — “If you ask Warren Thompson to predict what the restaurant industry looks like on the other side of the Covid-19 crisis, he’s straightforward — ‘I believe 30% to 35% of restaurants will not make it. They will either close or change hands.'” [Washington Business Journal]
Reston Tech Company Names Chief Growth Officer — “Reston-based tech company TekSynap announced last week it has hired Pete Brady as chief growth officer. With more than 35 years of experience in military operations, growth, business development and technology, he was most recently the chief growth officer with BlueWater Federal, which was acquired by Tetra Tech. “ [Virginia Business Monthly]
Photo via vantagehill/Flickr
The Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department is coming up with more ways to help local residents receive CPR in the event of an emergency.
Earlier this month, the department announced the official launch of the PulsePoint, a phone app that connects to 911 and alerts CPR-trained residents if someone in a nearby, public location is experiencing Sudden Cardiac Arrest (SCA).
The rate of survival from SCA decreases by between seven and 10 percent for every minute that passes before help arrives, according to the department. The app can be downloaded from the Apple Store or on Google Play. Potential resident rescues are also alerted to the exact location of a defibrillator.
Fire Chief John Butler is encouraging residents to download the app.
“In working with PulsePoint, our goal is to get every resident with access to early intervention in order to save as many lives as possible,” Butler said.
Butler pushed for the institution of the app in Howard County, Md., where he was previously the fire chief.
Last year, the American Heart Association (AHA) created new guidelines that urged fire departments to have the capability to alert willing bystanders for the need of CPR.
“The AHA recommendation was considered and played a significant role in the Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Departments’ implementation of PulsePoint,“ said Battalion Chief George Robbins, the county’s community risk reduction program manager.
He noted that CPR-related calls are fairly common in Fairfax County. In 2019 and 2020, the department responded to 645 and 663 patients where EMS crews attempted resuscitation respectively, Robbins told Reston Now.
An email is required to set up an account once the app is downloaded.
Photo via PulsePoint Foundation/Facebook
Construction on the long-anticipated new Fire and Reston Station 25 on Wiehle Avenue in Reston is coming along and is planning to be set for occupancy towards the end of 2021, Fairfax County Fire and Rescue’s assistant public information officer Bill Delaney tells Reston Now.
Late last month (Dec. 2020), the department tweeted that the station would be ready by the summer.
It’s beginning to look a lot like…….a fire and rescue station! New Station 25, Reston, is coming along nicely! Estimated occupancy is the Summer of 2021. Funding for the new station was included on the 2015 Public Safety Bond Referendum approved by voters.#FCFRD pic.twitter.com/aNtFAbEcPk
— Fairfax County Fire/Rescue (@ffxfirerescue) December 29, 2020
Delaney says the delay is due to extremely wet weather over the last few months and “other challenges that are normal parts of the building process.”
The initial timeline floated in 2018 for completion in spring 2021, so the project appears to be behind that original projected date.
The nearly $15 million project will more than double the size of the previous station. The 17,150 square-foot, two-story facility will have four bays. It will also be able to accommodate up to 20 firefighters per shift and six apparatus equipment including a new engine, according to the architect’s description. The station is targeting LEED Silver certification.
County plans from early in 2018 said the design would have a “contemporary look to compliment the urban feel of Reston Town Center.”
Funding for the new station was included on the Public Safety Bond Referendum approved by voters in 2015. Four other fire stations were included in the referendum for renovation or rebuild. The Woodlawn station in Alexandria is set to open for occupancy in the spring and Edsall Road station in Springfield is scheduled for next year.
The new Reston station is being built on the same site as the old station. That one was built in 1972 and last upgraded in 1986. It was only 2.5 bays and deemed “grossly undersized” for the community.
In January 2020, fire fighters moved to a temporary station nearby at 1840 Cameron Glen Drive until the new station is ready for occupancy.
A Fairfax County official told the Patch at the time that the move would have no impact on the station’s ability to serve the community.
Demolition started in March on the old fire station.
Photo courtesy of Fairfax County Fire and Rescue.
Apartment Fire on Castle Rock Square Under Control — A fire broke out in the bathroom of an apartment building on the 2200 block of Castle Rock Square late yesterday. No injuries were reported. [Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department]
Hands-free Cell Phone Laws Go Into Effect — Beginning Jan. 1, it is against the law to hold a phone or mobile device while driving. [Fairfax County Police Department]
Local Reston Heroes Who Went Above and Beyond — Three Restonians were honored for being local heroes by Patch readers. They include a member of the Reston Community Center Board, a childcare worker, and the owners of ArtInsights Gallery of Film and Contemporary Art. [Reston Patch]
Photo via vantagehill/Flickr
Multiple lanes are closed on the Dulles Toll Road just after Reston Parkway after a 40-gallon fuel tank leaked earlier this morning.
The Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department expects three or four lanes to remain shut down for roughly an hour, according to a statement released earlier today.
No injuries have been reported and the leak is under control.
⚠️ Traffic Alert (7:45 a.m. Wednesday): Due to an overturned truck, multiple lanes are blocked on the Westbound Dulles Toll Road at Exit 12.
Expect delays and follow police direction.
The ramp to Exit 12 (S.R. 602/Reston Parkway) is also blocked .
— Dulles Toll Road (@Dulles_Toll_Rd) December 23, 2020
Units on scene of a box truck on its side on Route 267 Westbound just after Reston Parkway. 40 gallon fuel tank was leaking. Leak has been stopped. No injuries reported at this time. 3 of 4 lanes are shut-down – potentially for an hour. Seek alternate route. #FCFRD #traffic pic.twitter.com/Y6Jc64x2Oi
— Fairfax County Fire/Rescue (@ffxfirerescue) December 23, 2020
Be Wary of Icy Conditions — The county is advising residents to be wary of icy patches and slippery spots on roads and sidewalks this morning until temperatures rise later today. [Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department]
New Process for Requesting Park Programs Now Available — ”The Park Authority has a new program request form that makes it easy to register for personalized programs for birthdays, scout gatherings, school enrichment and family fun in parks throughout Fairfax County.” [Fairfax County Park Authority]
Reston HR Services Contractor In the Spotlight — ”Golden Key Group LLC (GKG) scored a major feather in its cap Wednesday with a contract to provide the Department of Commerce’s human resources information technology services — but that’s just the start for the company, executives said.” [Washington Business Journal]
Photo by Doug Errett