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Fairfax County Public Schools Opening 2 Hours Late

Overnight snow showers make for slick roads.

Fairfax County Public Schools are opening on a two-hour delay this morning due to snow that fell overnight.

According to the FCPS website this morning: 

  • Morning preschool (special education) classes are canceled. 
  • Afternoon preschool (special education) classes start on their regular schedule.
  • Full-day preschool (special education) and Family and Early Childhood Education Program/Head Start classes start two hours later than the regular schedule.
  • Morning field trips are canceled.
  • SACC centers will be open by 7:15 a.m. 
  • Morning transportation for high school academy classes is canceled.
  • Adult and community education classes will start on time.

Federal employees have the option for unscheduled telework or unscheduled leave today.

Falls Church City Public Schools are operating on a normal schedule, according to the school district's twitter account. 

Snow showers began after midnight Thursday and continued on and off throughout the night. The sun is expected to peek out by 10 a.m. with temperatures rising to 29 this afternoon. Winds will come from the northwest, bringing the wind chill down into the teens all day.

Check here for winter weather driving tips before you hit the roads this morning.

Liz Downing Revell January 24, 2013 at 01:57 PM
FCPS Transportation obviously did not check the roads here in Clifton/Fairfax Station: the roads aren't plowed. Fairfax County still has hilly rural roads!
Snowy Delight January 24, 2013 at 02:22 PM
I have to laugh at all the folks complaining school and work wasn't cancelled. Thank god we don't live in a real winter town. If you can sweep the 2" snow away with a broom, you don't need to cancel school. This isn't ice folks, it's snow. You can drive in it with a 2WD at cautious speeds on neighborhood roads, and normal speeds everywhere else...heck, I saw a motorcycle on 123.
Maureen Carlstrom January 24, 2013 at 02:48 PM
They didn't check the roads in Annandale either. Believe me I know about the hilly roads. I live in Annandale and slid down the hill out of my street. I had to park my car on the side of the road because a school bus was stuck sideways on a hill. I couldn't turn around because the cars behind me were stuck trying to get back up the other side of the hill. walked home & will get the car later.
Keith Yoder January 24, 2013 at 03:21 PM
Yes, It is good we don't live in a real winter town. However, to ignore the reality that a very high percentage of people living here have little or no experience driving in snow or ice is not necessarily wise policy. The side streets in most subdivisions were neither treated nor plowed and I didn't see anyone out there brooming off the streets. Instead what I saw was snow packed into slick ice and cars slipping and sliding everywhere. Saw a bunch of wrecks. I am ambivalent about actually cancelling school but it a bit tricky out there this morning.
Sally Spangler January 24, 2013 at 03:39 PM
Yesssssssssssssss, but you seeeeeee! I live on a back road and it is not even good enough, unplowed to drive on. VDOT thinks of us as a 4th grade road - to be cleared after everything else if cleared. Makes life very interesting. So- I will call VDOT and remind them that our road is longer than the little bit where it connects to Gunston Road. It would be very nice - if they would at least cut all the way to the end our our "boulevard" (two lanes) so the rest of us can get out! The rest of you D-Y's can return to where you came from and if not start paying Fairfax and Virginia taxes, put Virginia tags on our cars, registering them in the State. Also get Virginia driver's license and remember you are now NOT IN YOUR HOME STATE! Only military personnel stationed in Virginia can use out of state licenses - you are only "passing through"
Wien January 24, 2013 at 04:00 PM
Fairfax had 1" (official on record), maybe a bit more here or there, wasn't even 2" really. To think of the absolute chaos that 1-2" causes this area is laughable.
Wien January 24, 2013 at 04:01 PM
And that's with no ice. The temps never got high enough to cause melt/refreeze issues. God help this region when the borderline temps cause ice in the winter.
Wien January 24, 2013 at 04:09 PM
Hate to give VDOT credit (ever), but in this case, what do citizens expect VDOT to do? Industrial plows are not going to be the answer to 1-1.5" of snow. That lies too low for them to clear with their plows, other than maybe skim the surface, in which case these large trucks are just out there packing down the snow, which doesn't serve any purpose and actually makes it worse on the hills. There was a Bobcat clearing snow in a parking lot in Vienna and you could barely tell where it scraped; there just wasn't enough snow to make the blade worth it, even at it's lowest setting. And ignoring the fact that it isn't feasible to plow a couple inches of snow...let's say VDOT had enough street sweepers and could use them to brush snow down to asphalt...if citizens expect VDOT to sand/salt every single road and residence when the forecast calls for Trace-to-2" then I hope everyone's ready to pay a lot more taxes. Sad to say, it's almost always a driver issue in this area, not an infrastructure issue. Other places have it a lot worse and suffer far less gridlock and accidents. Not sure what we can do to get our citizens (and bus drivers, and delivery drivers, etc) to take the simple actions to drive safely and easily on small snowfalls.
Maureen Carlstrom January 24, 2013 at 05:08 PM
It is Noon and I just came back from taking a walk and on the corner of Murray and Larchmont in Annandale and there is a school bus stuck on the corner because it cannot make it up the hill because of the ice. There are 2 other school buses sitting on side streets deciding what to do. I am just speaking for my neighborhood that it was not safe for drivers this morning.
Not to mention everyone always clamors to "put down chemicals!" when it comes to these debates. But many chemicals and road treatments do not work below certain temperatures (seems counter-intuitive, but that's the truth). Not to mention many treatments can make the re-freeze process worse and result in more slick roads. Considering a couple nights ago we hit the coldest temps in FOUR years, overnight treatment last night would've been ineffective at best and made this AM more dangerous at worst. Treating and plowing roads isn't nearly as easy as "more people, more trucks" and isn't nearly as easy as people think it is.
Curmudgeon January 24, 2013 at 06:26 PM
If we lived in a real winter town, don't you suppose people would get used to driving in snow? I lived for 20 years on a mountain and can drive in anything but I see no reason to be condescending to people because they don't have the experience to be effective in a situation you find simple to manage.
Wien January 24, 2013 at 07:17 PM
To respond to Curmudgeon, I don't think you need to live in a snowy town to drive on 1-2" of snow. I've never lived in the north; it's common sense to slow down and use caution. You don't need experience to drive in the snow, you need common sense. Folks out there in Arlington getting in accidents aren't hauling 18-wheelers in the snow or tackling mountain passes in low gears, they're sliding into cars at stop lights and common 90-degree turns. That isn't experience. That's a lack of common sense...which is obviously seen on our area highways even when it's sunny, but that's magnified when it snows. And this isn't said to be condescending, but I do think people expect far too much out of VDOT in the winter. Outside the fact it's nearly impossible to plow (or treat as someone else said) such a small amount of snow and get down to asphalt, folks need to remember that Fairfax County is what, 400 sq miles or so? It's impossible to service that amount of space with any efficiency, especially since according to CWG we've gone 704 days between 2" snow storms. It's not even worth the depreciation expense of trucks sitting idle for two years to handle treating 400 sq miles. All of us just need to move a little slower and more cautious out there. A little patience would do the entire area some good (at all times of year).
Sandra January 24, 2013 at 07:38 PM
I don't know where you guys live, but in our area (Clifton) there is ice in spots. Try to stop at the stoplight at the top of an incline and your car has trouble getting any traction and starts to slide back. Snow is not a big deal, but yes, there is ice in some areas. Please don't be so condescending, you don't know what conditions are like in every neighborhood.
Curmudgeon January 24, 2013 at 08:07 PM
- All of us just need to move a little slower and more cautious out there. Amen to that. I also don't want more chemicals, etc., on the roads.
Molly Worker January 25, 2013 at 11:31 AM
I have lived in Ottawa, Canada and Madison, WI. Definitely those areas are much colder and people more experienced with winter driving etc. HOWEVER, Greater Washington DC area has unexpected hills and valleys and unpredictable weather patterns--but most of all many conscientious road users hampered by many non-caring drivers who at times seem not to have had proper U.S. drivers' training. Add to that the rat-race to make a living--the unfortunate situation where some cannot take leave from work till situation gets better or inner streets taking you out to main roads are traversible.... Use of stricter traffic laws on speeding and relaxation on the requirement to stop at difficult to hold locations, with additional traffic directors allowing the ones who could slide back come out a bit more into the intersection if they MUST stop, etc., and general all around caution will definitely improve situation--I now live in Vienna, VA off of busy but winding and hilly Lawyers but even at this location, on even bigger storms with more accumulations, my street does not get plowed even for 4 or 5 days after a storm. It is with a pang in heart we listen to machines clearing Abbottsford but not entering any of the side streets while thet freeze over, and the noise of the machines fading away ... yes, of course the able bodied younger home-owners and monied elders do it themselves or pay to but what of weaker poorer that have to get to work?

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