Like much of the D.C. area, Fairfax County is now under a Severe Thunderstorm Watch that will be in place until 9 p.m.

The region is bracing for a second consecutive night of potentially damaging wind and rainfall after a storm that swept through late Wednesday (July 28) resulted in power outages that affected thousands of people in Fairfax County, particularly around McLean and Falls Church.

While many of the outages have been addressed, Dominion Energy’s outage map shows that, as of 3:30 p.m., crews are still working to restore electricity in some areas. The current estimated time of restoration for the lingering outages ranges from before 5 p.m. to 6-11 p.m.

A Tornado Watch has been issued for D.C.’s Maryland suburbs, but Fairfax County could see damaging hail, isolated flash flooding, and large hail from the incoming storm, according to the National Weather Service.

The Fairfax County Office of Emergency Management advises residents to “stay weather aware and know what to do if a warning is issued,” which would mean that severe weather is imminent or underway.

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Almost 7,000 people in Fairfax County still have no electricity after a thunderstorm took out trees and wires late last night (Wednesday).

According to PowerOutage.US, 6,920 Dominion Energy customers in the county are experiencing a power outage as of 9:10 a.m. Dominion’s outage map shows that, while there are scattered outages farther south, the vast majority of those without power are in McLean and Falls Church.

Crews are working on and investigating many of the reported outages. The estimated time of restoration is noon to 5 p.m. for those in the Langley and Scott’s Run area and 6-11 p.m. for the many outages in McLean southeast of Route 123 and West Falls Church.

“Our plan includes all resources engaged w/ over 50 bucket trucks,” Dominion spokesperson Peggy Fox said on Twitter. “Stay away from downed lines — assume energized.”

The Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department warns that people should stay away from any downed wires. Fallen trees can be reported to 9-1-1 if it is a life-threatening situation or the Virginia Department of Transportation if they are impeding roads, though removal of trees on private property is the owner’s responsibility.

According to the National Weather Service, more storms are expected to hit the D.C. area this afternoon and evening, with the possibility of flash flooding and even a tornado.

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Morning Notes

Storm Brings Power Outages, Hail to Fairfax County — Thunderstorms swept through Fairfax County last night (Wednesday), resulting in reports of damaging winds and even hail “that toppled trees and wires.” As of midnight, Dominion Energy’s outage map showed thousands of people in the county without power, particularly around McLean. [Capital Weather Gang]

Farmer’s Market Nonprofit Awarded State GrantFRESHFARM will get a $50,000 grant from the Virginia Food Access Investment Fund to establish new fresh food mobile markets in food-insecure areas of Northern Virginia. The nonprofit operates several farmer’s markets in Fairfax County, including the ones at the Mosaic District and The Boro. [Patch]

More Traffic Control Sought for Great Falls Park — “Great Falls Citizens Association (GFCA) officials are seeking to have the federal government provide $100,000 in permanent, annual funding for U.S. Park Police to control traffic at Old Dominion Drive and Georgetown Pike outside the park’s entrance when park usage is especially heavy…Traffic congestion outside the park routinely occurs on weekends, holidays and fee-free days from March through early November, GFCA leaders said.” [Sun Gazette/Inside NoVA]

Madison HS Student Brings Books and Bikes to Tanzania — James Madison High School rising junior Sophia Brown organized a bicycle drive at the Vienna school in May and collected dozens of donated books to bring to Tanzania for a Girl Scout project. Sophia traveled to the East African country this summer with support from the nonprofit Wheels to Africa, which she has worked with since she was in second grade. [FCPS]

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A map of a power outage in McLean, caused by a tree that fell on utility wires on Spring Hill Road (via Dominion Energy)

(Updated at 11:35 a.m.) 302 people in McLean are without power after a tree fell and took out some utility wires on Spring Hill Road overnight.

Dominion Energy spokesperson Peggy Fox says the fallen tree broke one pole and two cross-arms, bringing down four spans of wire.

Spring Hill Road has been closed between Georgetown Pike and Old Dominion Drive so that crews can work to address the downed pole and restore power, WTOP reported.

According to Dominion’s outage map, a crew is currently assessing the damage caused by the tree, and the estimated time of restoration is between 11 a.m. and 5 p.m., a timeframe confirmed by Fox.

The Spring Hill Recreation Center (1239 Spring Hill Road) is temporarily closed due to the ongoing power outage, according to the Fairfax County Park Authority.

“Summer camps have been relocated to the school next door,” the park authority said on social media. “Indoor classes are temporarily canceled. Outdoor classes are being held as scheduled, but check with your instructor.”

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Site of power outage affecting 1,215 people in Tysons’ Pimmit neighborhood after July 1, 2021 storm (via Dominion Energy)

Updated at 4:40 p.m. — Metrorail service has been restored between the Vienna and West Falls Church stations after the transit system encountered power issues at its Dunn Loring station.

“Residual delays continue in both directions,” Metro says.

Updated at 1:40 p.m. — The I-66 eastbound and westbound left lanes in the Vienna/Oakton area have now reopened, the Virginia Department of Transportation says.

Earlier: More than a thousand people in the Pimmit area of Tysons are currently without power after a thunderstorm rattled the D.C. region last night (Thursday).

According to Dominion Energy’s outage map, the most substantial power outage in the Tysons area involves 1,215 customers in the Pimmit neighborhood west of Leesburg Pike, specifically along George C. Marshall Drive.

Those affected include the Tysons-Pimmit Regional Library, which will not open at 10 a.m. today as scheduled.

Dominion is attributing the outage to the storm and says crews have been dispatched. The estimated time of restoration is between 6 and 11 p.m.

As of 9 a.m. today (Friday), there were 6,699 customers in Northern Virginia without power, primarily in Fairfax and Arlington counties. Overall, the storm produced 33,000 power outages in the area, according to Dominion spokesperson Peggy Fox.

“Due to much damage from last night’s storm, it’ll take most of day for our @DominionEnergy crews to repair all the damage & get everyone’s power back,” Fox said in a tweet. “Thank you for your patience!”

Metro announced just after 5 a.m. that the power issues had affected its Dunn Loring-Merrifield station, requiring a suspension of train service between the Vienna and West Falls Church stations. Shuttle buses are being provided to serve that section of the Orange Line.

As of 9:30 a.m., service has not been restored yet.

In addition, the Virginia Department of Transportation says the Interstate 66 east and westbound left lanes have been closed at the new split near the 61-mile marker in Vienna so that crews can clear standing water left by last night’s rain.

The I-66 westbound ramp to Nutley Street was also temporarily but reopened around 7:35 a.m.

According to The Washington Post, the National Weather Service is investigating whether a tornado touched down after a tornado warning was issued last night for neighboring Arlington County and D.C.

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More than 5,000 people in northern Fairfax County are currently without power, as a thunderstorm pummels the D.C. area.

According to Dominion Energy’s outage map, the largest outages are concentrated in the east Reston and Great Falls area and north of Tysons, where 1,075 customers between Lewinsville Road and Georgetown Pike are without power due to the storm, which started pouring rain earlier this evening (Thursday).

For the Tysons outage, a crew is currently assessing the damage, but Dominion has not determined an estimated time of restoration yet.

In a Severe Thunderstorm Warning issued at 8:21 p.m., the National Weather Service advised residents to move indoors to the lowest part of their residence.

“Large hail and damaging winds and continuous cloud to ground lightning is occurring with these storms. Move indoors immediately,” the NWS said. “Lightning is one of nature’s leading killers. Remember, if you can hear thunder, you are close enough to be struck by lightning.”

Image via Dominion Energy

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Updated at 6:05 p.m. — High winds have led to a surge in 9-1-1 and non-emergency public safety calls in Fairfax County.

The county is urging people to call 9-1-1 only if there is an emergency.

At least 76 traffic incidents have also been reported due to the ongoing weather, including events at the Route 50 and Prosperity Avenue intersection, according to Providence District Supervisor Dalia Palchik.

Earlier: More than 2,000 people in Tysons have lost power due to strong wind gusts that have pummeled Northern Virginia this afternoon (Friday).

According to Dominion Energy’s outage map, one of the biggest outages in the Tysons area is north of the Dulles Toll Road to the Potomac River, where 1,073 customers are currently without power. A crew has been dispatched to the area, but the cause of this outage is pending investigation.

An additional 1,084 people along Route 7 between I-495 and Spring Hill Road have also lost power. The outage has already been attributed to the wind storm, and a Dominion crew is awaiting assignment.

Two separate outages in the area around Wolf Trap National Park have collectively affected 1,195 customers.

Among those affected by the Route 7 outage is the Tysons District Taco (1500 Cornerside Blvd), which announced at 5:34 p.m. that it has closed until further notice after losing power.

Dominion Energy estimates that power could be restored throughout the area any time between 7 p.m. and midnight.

The National Weather Service issued a Wind Advisory that took effect at noon and was later upgraded to a High Wind Warning, which will remain in effect until 2 a.m. tomorrow (Saturday). Even though no rain or thunder was anticipated, the agency issued a Severe Thunderstorm Warning at 4:38 p.m., saying that wind gusts could reach up to 60 miles per hour.

“Damaging winds will cause some trees and large branches to fall,” the NWS said. “This could injure those outdoors, as well as damage homes and vehicles. Roadways may become blocked by downed trees. Localized power outages are possible. Unsecured light objects may become projectiles.”

The Severe Thunderstorm Warning expired at 5:15 p.m., but local residents could be dealing with the storm’s impact well into this evening.

Image via Dominion Energy

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Morning Notes

Strong Winds Take Out Power for Thousands — About 4,000 people across Northern Virginia lost electricity yesterday (Wednesday) due to strong winds that prompted the National Weather Service to issue a Wind Advisory for the D.C. area until 8 p.m. More than 1,000 people in the Vienna/Oakton area in particular were affected, according to Dominion Energy’s outage map. [Dominion Energy/Twitter]

Vienna Resident Dies in Route 29 Crash — Vienna resident Michael K. Ratzenberger was one of two drivers killed on Sunday (April 18) in a head-on crash on Route 29 in Culpeper County. Virginia State Police said he entered the highway in the wrong direction when his car collided with another vehicle driven by Jose B. Hernandez Solis, 50, of Culpeper. The crash also left four passengers in Solis’s vehicle seriously injured. [The Washington Post]

Fairfax County Judge Orders Release of D.C. Firefighter — “A Fairfax County Circuit Court judge has overturned the 2019 conviction of a Black D.C. firefighter, saying the case was built on false representations from the arresting county police officer.” [WTOP]

Falls Church Little League Awarded Grant for Batting Cages — The Fairfax County Park Authority Board voted on April 14 to approve the Falls Church Kiwanis Little League’s request for $12,737.25 in grant money to construct three hitting stations adjacent to field 2 at Idylwood Park. It was one of three grant requests approved at the meeting. [FCPA]

Madison Field Hockey Team Advances to State Finals — James Madison High School’s field hockey team is going to the state finals after beating W.T. Woodson 2-0 on Tuesday (April 20). A state championship win would be the first for the school’s field hockey program, according to head coach Carrie Holman. [LocalDVM]

Photo by Joanne Liebig

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(Updated at 10:50 a.m.) Students at Kilmer Middle School and Kilmer Center in Vienna are all learning virtually today (Friday) after both schools lost power this morning.

Karl Frisch, who represents Providence District on the Fairfax County School Board, said on Twitter that parents and guardians have been notified about the power outage, and students were sent home to “commence synchronous learning with their teachers.”

Dominion Energy’s outage map indicates that there is an ongoing outage near Kilmer Middle School that took out power for 133 customers.

According to the map, crews are currently working to resolve the outage, which is being attributed to “emergency work.” The current estimated time of restoration is sometime between 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. today.

Fairfax County Public Schools spokesperson Lucy Caldwell confirmed that the school system contacted Kilmer parents to let them know that students are being transported home starting at 11 a.m. due to a power loss in the building at 8100 Wolftrap Road.

“FCPS is [in] contact with Dominion Power and are working to address the issue as quickly as possible. We are not sure of the timeframe of the repair,” Caldwell said.

She noted that virtual students “will also be impacted since teachers were unable to deliver concurrent instruction” from the building.

Tysons Reporter reached out to Dominion Energy for comment but did not hear back before publication.

Map via Dominion Energy

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Updated at 1:45 p.m. — The power outage that has affected hundreds of people in the McLean and Arlington area was the result of an equipment failure, Dominion Energy spokesperson Peggy Fox told Tysons Reporter.

Fox says the equipment has been repaired, but crews are still working to restore power to some customers, Dominion’s outage map shows.

Earlier: More than 700 people in McLean and Arlington just to the west of George Washington Memorial Parkway have lost power.

The outage has affected 738 customers from Kirby Road to the north and past Glebe Road to the south.

A Dominion Energy crew is currently assessing damage and investigating the cause of the outage. Power is expected to be restored between 1-4 p.m., according to the utility company’s power outage map.

Image via Dominion Energy

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