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Drivers urged to avoid travel along I-81 corridor during winter storm

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Posted at 1:04 PM, Dec 15, 2020
and last updated 2020-12-15 13:04:23-05

RICHMOND, Va. -- Virginia State Police is urging drivers to avoid travel, if possible, along the Interstate 81 corridor Wednesday during a winter storm.

The warning comes as there a several winter storm watches and warnings in effect for the western part of the state. Heavy snow is expected along and west of the Blue Ridge Mountains.

The National Weather Service in Blacksburg is calling for "a wintry mix of snow, sleet and freezing rain" Wednesday into Thursday.

Officials say VDOT is pre-treating the highways Tuesday, but slippery and dangerous conditions are still anticipated.

State police say they are prepared for the winter weather and will have all available troopers on patrol to respond as quickly to possible traffic crashes, emergencies and disabled motorists.

State police offered these tips if you must travel Wednesday:

  • Know Before You Go! Before heading out, check Virginia road conditions at www.511virginia.org or download the VDOT 511 app.
  • Clear ALL snow and ice from the roof, trunk, hood and windows of your vehicle - car, SUV, minivan, pickup truck, commercial vehicle - before you travel
  • Use your headlights
  • Drive for conditions - slow your speed and increase your traveling distance between the vehicle ahead of you
  • Buckle Up
  • Avoid distractions - put down the phone
  • Do not call 911 or #77 for road conditions.