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Flash Flood Watch In Effect Through Tonight

The National Weather Service has issued a flash flood watch for the area until 10 p.m. today.

Slow-moving showers and thunderstorms are expected this afternoon and into the evening. Intense rainfall rates could lead to flash flooding.

Here’s more from the NWS alert:

A FLASH FLOOD WATCH MEANS THAT CONDITIONS MAY DEVELOP THAT LEAD TO FLASH FLOODING. FLASH FLOODING IS A VERY DANGEROUS SITUATION.

YOU SHOULD MONITOR LATER FORECASTS AND BE PREPARED TO TAKE ACTION SHOULD FLASH FLOOD WARNINGS BE ISSUED

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Updated: Several Roads in Reston Closed

As you head out for your commute this morning, be wary of several road closures in Reston due to water in the roadway. A complete list, updated at 10:40 a.m. today, is below.

  • 10050 block of Browns Mill Road – Mud and water in the roadway
  • Hunter Mill Road at Hunter Station Road – Water in the roadway
  • Hunter Mill Road at Cedar Pond Drive – Water in the roadway

This story was updated to include the most recent road closures.

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Flash Flood Watch in Effect Through the Evening

The National Weather Service has issued a flash flood watch for the area from 3 p.m. through this evening.

Showers and thunderstorms are expected to hit the area this afternoon. Due to saturated soil caused by this week’s rain, additional rain may result in flash flooding, according to the alert.

This story will be updated.

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Wednesday Morning Notes

Road closures in Reston — Browns Mill Road at Windstone Drive and Browns Mill Road at Rosewood Hill Drive are closed due to water in the roadway. One lane is open near Lee Mill Road at Kelso Road. [Fairfax County Police Department]

Town of Herndon job opening — Town officials are looking for a new director of public works. The position pays between $120,000 and $140,000. [Town of Herndon]

PRC exchanges continue — The Coalition for a Planned Reston penned a letter to Hunter Mill District Supervisor Cathy Hudgins about a recent parks and open space meeting with the county. [Reston 20/20]

Nearby: Tornado touches down on Tuesday — “The National Weather Service confirmed Tuesday evening that an early morning tornado touched down for about a minute in the Lincolnia area.” [WTOP]

Photo by Ruth Sievers

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Updated: Rain Causes Road Closures in Reston

Several roads in the area are closed today due to flooding.

Water in the roadway has caused closures at Browns Mill Road at Wind Stone Drive, Browns Mill Road at Rosewood Hill Drive, and Lee Mill Road at Kelso Road.

A tree and wires are down at Georgetown Pike from Walker Road to Boehms Court. Rain is expected to continue today and Wednesday. Partly cloudy conditions are expected from Thursday through Saturday.

This story was updated. 

Photo via Twitter user @MrErrett

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Severe Thunderstorm Warning Extended to 5:30 p.m.

The National Weather Service has extended a severe thunderstorm warning to 5:30 p.m. today (May 22).

NWS advises the following:

Get indoors to protect yourself from wind and lightning. Trees around you may be downed from damaging winds, so if you are near large trees, move to an interior room on the lowest floor. Don’t drive underneath trees or in wooded areas until the threat has passed.

To report severe weather, contact your nearest law enforcement agency. They will send your report to the National Weather Service office in Sterling Virginia.

Torrential rainfall is occurring with this storm, and may lead to flash flooding. Do not drive your vehicle through flooded roadways.

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It Could Be A Rainy Weekend in Reston

Though originally Restonians were promised a mild, sunny weekend with temps in the 70s–after enduring several days of 80- to 90-degree heat–it looks like the weather forecast has taken a rather damp turn.

The Capital Weather Gang predicts a strong likelihood of storms that could begin as soon as Friday night, and make periodic appearances throughout the weekend, though the schedule is anything but concrete.

“Some shower activity seems unavoidable, but we should have dry intervals, too. Our best advice is to stay flexible and have a Plan B for anything outside,” says The Gang.

The highest chances of rain, including possible thunder and heavy downpours, appears to be between Saturday afternoon and Sunday afternoon, with a chance of drying out by Sunday evening.

“Timing is fluid and subject to change,” the Gang explains.

Western Maryland and West Virginia are more directly in the path of the approaching storm front. The Gang says it is still possible that it will miss the greater D.C. area if the front “loses steam” before it reaches us.

File photo

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Under the Cover of Rain, Reston Residents Head to Polls in Statewide Election


Despite the downpour of rain on Tuesday, a steady stream of voters cast their votes at Armstrong Elementary School in Reston. As of 2 p.m. on Tuesday, 209,223 residents of Fairfax County voted in Virginia’s election.

The state is only of of two in the United States with statewide elections this year. Republican Ed Gillespie and Democrat Ralph Northam are vying for governor in what is expected to be a narrow contest, according to The New York Times. Libertarian Cliff Hyra is also running.

In the last election in 2013, turnout rested at 46.8 percent. With a little more than four hours before polls close, turnout this year sits at 30.6 percent, according to the county.

A record number of absentee ballots were cast this year, according to Fairfax County officials. More than 41,000 Virginians participated in early voting, up by roughly 61 percent from voting in 2013. Absentee voting was up in every jurisdictions in Virginia, except three, according to the Virginia Public Access Project, a non-profit organization that provides information about local politics.

There are more than 684,041 active registered voters in Fairfax County. Throughout the day, voters trickled in at various polling sites throughout Reston and Fairfax County. By 10 a.m., nearly 16 percent or roughly 109,000 of registered voters already casted their ballot.

All 100 seats in the Virginia House of Delegates are up for election. Fifty-five of those seats are contested.

Reston’s current Delegate, Democrat Ken Plum, is running without opposition in this election. Plum is currently serving his 36th year as the local Delegate for the 36th District, which includes Reston. Prior to his political appointment, he served for roughly 20 years as a public school teacher and administrator. Plum recently commented on his unopposed race for re-election in his weekly commentary.

Two candidates, Republican Jill Vogel and Justin Fairfax are running to replace Ralph Northam as Virginia’s lieutenant governor, a role which often presides over the State Senate, and has the power to break tie votes. The race for attorney general is between the current attorney general, Democrat Mark Herring, and his opponent, Republican John Adams.

The Board of Supervisors has asked residents to approve the sale of $315 million in bonds. If approved, the county has published a list of school improvement projects they would use the money to pay for.

The American Civil Liberties Union received multiple reports from Virginia voters who said that they received calls falsely saying their polling place had changed. The civil liberties organization advised voters to confirm polling locations at elections.virginia.gov and report any issues by calling the organization at 804-644-8080.

Polling stations are open through 7 p.m. Results can be viewed live at VPAP’s website or on the Fairfax County Government website.

Photo by Fatimah Waseem

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As Nate Loses Steam, Damp Week Expected in Reston

Scattered rain showers are expected to swing through Reston this week as the former Hurricane Nate slogs through the region.

The storm was downgraded over the weekend from a hurricane to a tropical storm and later to a tropical depression, but it will still send a wave of rain across the East Coast. Nate sped through the Gulf Coast over the weekend as a Category 1 Storm, leaving more than 100,000 customers without electricity in the region. The hurricane was also the first to make landfall in Mississippi since Katrina in 2005.

In Reston, the National Weather Service expects a break from the rain on Tuesday, followed by back-to-back showers on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday.

On Tuesday, the chance of rain is 20 percent, with temperatures hovering in the low 60s in the evening. On Wednesday and Thursday, the chance of showers is 50 percent. Skies will remain cloudy through Friday, according to the National Weather Service.

The Weather Channel provides a 10-day snapshot of the forecast here.

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Flash Flooding Possible as Area Could See Several Inches of Rain Starting Friday

Heavy rains are being predicted for the entire region the next two days, and emergency agencies are warning that may mean flash flooding.

A flash-flood watch has been issued for the area, to be in effect Friday afternoon through Saturday afternoon. According to the National Weather Service, a stationary low pressure cell may bring torrential rains.

Low pressure is going to develop over the Mid-Atlantic Friday and remain nearly stationary this weekend. This will have the potential to bring 3 inches or more of rain to the region through Saturday afternoon. Thunderstorms could cause locally higher rainfall amounts.

Heavy rainfall may result in rapid rises in streams and creeks. This could quickly result in flooding… especially in low lying and poor drainage areas.

Precautionary/preparedness actions… a flash flood watch means that conditions may develop that lead to flash flooding. Flash flooding is a very dangerous situation. You should monitor later forecasts and be prepared to take action should flash flood warnings be issued.

The Washington Post’s Capital Weather Gang says this storm’s structure is similar to that of a winter storm. They say some pockets within the storm may see upward of 7 inches of rain.

“Heavy storms may line up along a corridor and hit the same areas repeatedly — a worrisome phenomenon known as training,” the CWG says. “Areas that experience training will be most prone to flooding.”

Fairfax County offers some of the following tips of how to stay safe if flash flooding occurs or has the potential to occur:

  • Move immediately to higher ground. Do not wait for instructions to move.
  • Always stay away from floodwaters.
  • If you must walk in water, walk where water is not moving; use a stick to check the ground.
  • Be aware of streams, drainage channels and other areas known to flood suddenly. Flash floods can occur in these areas with or without such typical warnings as rain clouds or heavy rain.
  • Keep your children inside and away from streams and creeks.
  • Stay away from downed power lines to avoid the risk of electric shock or electrocution.
  • Keep your vehicle parked in your garage or on the driveway away from low-lying areas and large drains.

Residents are also reminded not to drive on flooded roads:

  • Stop and take an alternate route. The depth, current and condition of the road are all unknowns and can be deadly.
  • If your vehicle stalls on a flooded road and water is rising, get out of the car, call 9-1-1 and move to higher ground.
  • Be especially cautious during periods of limited visibility or nighttime when it is extremely difficult to see and judge conditions — state law requires headlights when wipers are on.

File photo

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Reston: When Will the Rain Stop?

You’ve undoubtedly noticed, it’s a wet and rainy morning around Reston. Will the rain let up today?

According to the National Weather Service, there’s a chance, but not a big one.

Rain and the chance of thunderstorms is likely until at least 2 p.m. Friday, with the added likelihood of “gusty winds.” Temperatures will mostly remain in the 60s, with a possible high of 73 degrees.

Around mid-afternoon, there is a chance the rain will finally stop between 2 to 4 p.m. Then, the chance of showers tonight goes down to around a 30-percent likelihood. Temperatures tonight will hover in the 50s.

For the weekend, sporadic rain is highly likely. The chance of rain is 70 percent between 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday, with a mostly clear mid-day leading to a 30-percent chance of rain returning around 8 p.m. Temperatures will linger in the 50s with a high near 64.

Thankfully, it looks like Restonians may be able to enjoy a dry Sunday. There is only a 20-percent chance of showers around 8 a.m. However dry, though, it will likely be an overcast and windy day, with temperatures in the 50s and wind gusts of up to 24 miles per hour.

 

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