The Virginia State Police is asking residents to avoid travel if possible during the expected winter storm, which forecasters say will bring 4 to 8 inches of snow and up to one-tenth of an inch of ice to Prince William County and surrounding areas of Northern Virginia between early Sunday morning and Monday night.
A winter storm warning is in effect from 1 a.m. Sunday to midnight on Sunday night, according to the National Weather Service.
Snow is expected to overspread the area between 3 and 5 a.m. Sunday morning, with the steadiest snow falling through the afternoon before tapering off to an intermittent mix of light snow, sleet and freezing rain on Sunday night.
Additional snow is expected Monday through Monday night with additional accumulations of around 1 to 3 inches.
The two phases of the storm are expected to bring a total of 4 to 8 inches of snow to the area, the National Weather Service says.
“Travel will be very difficult Sunday through Tuesday morning due to a prolonged period of snow and wintry precipitation with temperatures near or below freezing,” the winter storm warning says.
The Virginia Department of Transportation has been working to pre-treat the highways today, but slick and dangerous conditions are still anticipated due to the forecasts calling for significant snow accumulations, ice and rain.
“The Virginia State Police is already preparing for the winter weather and will have all available troopers on patrol in order to respond as quickly as possible to traffic crashes, emergencies and disabled motorists,” according to Corinne Geller, Virginia State Police spokeswoman.
Those who must travel should check Virginia road conditions at www.511virginia.org or download the VDOT 511 app.
Drivers should clear all snow and ice from their vehicles’ roofs, trunks, hoods and windows before travel. Use your headlights and drive for conditions, including slowing speed and increasing traveling distance with other vehicles.
The state police asks that people not call 911 for road conditions in order to leave the lines open for emergencies.