Newsletter
Northbound I-495 has been closed near Georgetown Pike in McLean after a tractor-trailer crash (via VDOT)

(Updated at 6 p.m. on 2/4/2022) The collision of two vehicles on I-495 in McLean on Tuesday (Feb. 1) sent two people to the hospital and shut down the interstate’s northbound lanes for hours.

According to the Virginia State Police, troopers responded to the crash involving a tractor-trailer and a box truck near Georgetown Pike at 4:03 p.m.

A 2016 Kenworth T680 tractor-trailer was traveling north on I-495 when it came to a stop due to heavy traffic. A 2016 International 4000 box truck was traveling in the same lane and struck the tractor-trailer in the rear.

The driver of the tractor-trailer, William Alcin, 40, of Hiram, Ga., was transported to Fairfax INOVA Hospital for treatment of serious injuries. He was wearing a seatbelt.

The driver of the box truck, Timothy R. Steele, 39, of Norcross, Ga., was transported to Fairfax INOVA Hospital for treatment of serious injuries. He was wearing a seatbelt.

All lanes on I-495 North, also known as the Capital Beltway Inner Loop, were closed during the crash response, resulting in backups that, at one point, extended as far as the I-66 interchange in Tysons.

Drivers were diverted onto Georgetown Pike until all lanes reopened shortly after 7 p.m.

The box truck driver was charged with reckless driving, and the crash remains under investigation, state police told Tysons Reporter.

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Morning Notes

I-66 Ramp Near Vienna to Close Tonight — The ramp from westbound I-66 to the Vienna/Fairfax-GMU Metro station will close for approximately three weeks start at 11 p.m. today (Friday). The closure is needed for utility work related to the I-66 Express Lanes expansion. Drivers will be detoured via Route 123 (Chain Bridge Road) South and I-66 East, with the Nutley Street exit as an alternative. [VDOT]

What Happened to Yesterday’s Snow — “After our forecast of a coating to two inches of snow in the region, most places saw no accumulation Thursday morning. Some spots didn’t even see a flake, only raindrops…The flawed predictions can be traced to computer model errors and the inability of human forecasters to adequately account for them.” [Capital Weather Gang]

ABC Stores Change Hours Due to Covid — The Virginia Alcoholic Beverage Authority will adjust operating hours at all of its stores to noon starting Monday (Jan. 24), citing reduced staffing capacity due to COVID-19 cases among workers. Closing hours remain the same, and curbside pickup and delivery services are still available. [WTOP]

McLean School Awards Student for Service — “The Potomac School has announced its first-ever Potomac School Award for Exemplary Service to recognize individuals who make a difference through service to others. The inaugural award went to Ericc Powell, a volunteer with Habitat for Humanity Metro Maryland.” [Patch]

County to Talk Affordable Housing — “Fairfax County and the Fairfax County Redevelopment and Housing Authority, in partnership with the George Mason School of Business, is planning the third annual Fairfax County Housing Symposium for Thursday, March 17, 2022, from 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. The theme of this year’s event is ‘Affordable Housing: A Foundation for Economic Recovery, Growth, and Opportunity.'” [Housing and Community Development]

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Morning Notes

Snow Exacerbates Regional Grocery Supply Issues — “Icy roads and the after-effects of last week’s snowy weather have stripped the shelves at local grocery stores in recent days, compounding supply chain crises that have been in the news for months, says one potato supplier.” [DCist]

County Gives Covid Relief to Businesses — “The Fairfax County Department of Economic Initiatives announced today that it has awarded more than $16,000,000 in PIVOT grant funds to 1,016 Fairfax County businesses adversely affected by the pandemic. Businesses in the most hard-hit sectors of the Fairfax County economy, including hotel, food service, retail and personal services, and arts and culture industries, were targeted.” [Fairfax County DEI]

FCPS Adopts Updated Covid Quarantine Guidelines — Fairfax County Public Schools has adopted most of the new federal guidelines for COVID-19 isolations and quarantines, allowing staff who test positive to return to work after five days if symptoms are gone or improving. Students must still isolate for 10 days, since school cafeterias don’t have room for social distancing. [Patch]

Christmas Tree Collection Extended — “Christmas tree collection has been extended through January 21, 2022, for recycling. Lights, decorations, and stands must be removed to ensure collection. After January 21, please schedule a brush Special Pickup to have the Christmas tree removed.” [DPWES]

Vienna Starts New Water Main Project Today — “Glen Ave. will be closed to through traffic from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. between Albrecht Circle and Wade Hampton Dr. to allow for installation of a new water main. Detours during those hours will last for 3 weeks or until the project is complete.” [Town of Vienna/Twitter]

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Dolley Madison Boulevard is closed between Old Dominion Drive and Elm Street (via Google Maps)

(Updated at 11:30 p.m.) Route 123 in McLean is closed in both directions after a bicyclist was killed in a crash.

The crash occurred at the Ingleside Avenue intersection. The driver of the vehicle involved in the crash remained on the scene, the Fairfax County Police Department says. The circumstances surrounding the crash were not immediately clear.

The bicyclist was transported to a hopsital, where he died from injuries sustained in the crash, police confirmed to Tysons Reporter.

The road, also known as Dolley Madison Boulevard, is currently closed to traffic between Old Dominion Drive and Elm Street

Police advise drivers in the area to utilize alternate routes.

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A fire burns down former Virginia governor Chuck Robb’s mansion in the 600 block of Chain Bridge Road in McLean (via FCFRD)

(Updated at 10:25 a.m.) A large fire burned down a house in McLean last night (Tuesday) that property records indicate belongs to former Virginia governor and senator Chuck Robb.

Units from the Fairfax County Department of Fire and Rescue responded to the 600 block of Chain Bridge Road before midnight and remained on the scene at least through 2:20 a.m.

When firefighters arrived, the two-alarm house fire was visible throughout the house’s first floor, the FCFRD said. It required assistance from the Arlington and Montgomery county fire departments.

Around 2:10 a.m., the fire was under control, and investigators were on the scene to determine the cause of the blaze. Two people were transported to a hospital with injuries considered non-life-threatening, but there were no reported firefighter injuries.

Fairfax County police closed all lanes on Chain Bridge Road (Route 123) from Merrie Ridge Road to North Glebe Road due to the fire department activity, eventually reopening the road around 9:30 a.m.

FCFRD spokesperson Bill Delaney told Tysons Reporter the cause of the fire has not been determined yet. The severity of the damage means the investigation could take weeks to complete.

Outgoing Gov. Ralph Northam expressed condolences to Robb and his wife, Lynda Johnson Robb, the daughter of former president Lyndon B. Johnson, for the fire.

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Morning Notes

Franklin Sherman ES Kicks Off COVID-19 Pediatric Vaccine Rollout — “Fairfax County Public Schools (FCPS) kicked off the national rollout of COVID-19 vaccination for children ages 5-11 today, when the school division welcomed First Lady Dr. Jill Biden to a clinic at the school where the first Polio vaccine was administered in 1954.” [FCPS]

Fire Department Now Accepting Toys for Tots — The Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department is participating in the annual National Capital Region Toys for Tots campaign, where firefighters and paramedics collect new, unwrapped toys that will be delivered to children for the holidays. Collection boxes will remain outside local fire stations until 8 p.m. every day until Sunday, Dec. 12. [FCFRD]

National Airport Opens New Security Lines — “Passengers will see a new way through security at Reagan National Airport starting Tuesday at 4 a.m. It launches as air traveler traffic is picking up to nearly 30,000 passengers a day at DCA and that’s expected to increase with the busy holiday season just weeks away.” [DCist]

Extended Closure Scheduled for I-66 West Ramp at Nutley — “The ramp from I-66 West to Nutley Street North and South will be closed from 9 p.m. Friday, November 12, continuously through 11 a.m. Monday, November 15, for paving operations. Traffic will be directed farther west to the exit to Vienna/Fairfax/GMU Station, stay to the right onto Country Creek Road, continue onto Virginia Center Boulevard, then at the traffic signal turn left to Nutley Street North or turn right to Nutley Street South.” [VDOT]

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Dunn Loring power outages on Oct. 29, 2021 (via Dominion Energy)

(Updated at 3 p.m.) Roughly 800 people in Dunn Loring are currently without power as rain continues to fall throughout the D.C. metropolitan area.

While flooding impacts appear to be more concentrated to the east in Arlington, Alexandria, and D.C. so far, Dominion Energy reports that 420 customers around Cedar Lane and Electric Avenue have lost power due to a broken pole.

There is also a power outage in Idylwood affecting 373 customers, though the cause of that outage is pending investigation.

The utility company estimates that power will be restored at both sites between 4 and 9 p.m.

The Fairfax County Police Department confirmed that the following roads have been closed:

As of 3 p.m., Lawyers Road at Hunter Mill Road in Vienna has also been closed due to high waters, according to Fairfax Alerts.

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Morning Notes

Victim of West Falls Church ATM Shooting Dies — “A 73-year-old man has died days after he was shot at an ATM in Falls Church, Virginia, during an attempted robbery, police said days after the attack. The victim was identified as Nelson Alexander, a loving, family-oriented man and involved member of his church who sang in the choir, his loved ones said.” [NBC4]

FCPS Hires Firm for Superintendent Search — The Fairfax County School Board has awarded human resources recruitment firm GR Recruiting a contract to conduct a nationwide search for Superintendent Scott Brabrand’s successor. Fairfax County Public Schools says parents, students, staff, and community members will be involved in the process, with the next superintendent taking over on July 1, 2022. [FCPS]

Another Full I-66 West Closure Coming Tonight — “All lanes of I-66 West approaching Route 7 (Leesburg Pike) will close Monday night, October 25, for continued bridge beam installation at the I-66/I-495 Interchange. Traffic will be detoured using Route 7 and I-495. Multiple lanes of I-495 North approaching I-66 will be closed, along with a full closure of the 495 Express Lanes North and associated ramps at the interchange so that this work may be implemented.” [VDOT]

Nonprofit Opens New Office in Vienna — “A nonprofit organization focused on providing day programs for adults with disabilities held a ribbon-cutting ceremony and talent show on Thursday as it celebrated the opening of its new administrative office in Vienna. The new office for the nonprofit SPARC is at The Church of the Good Shepherd, a United Methodist church located at 2351 Hunter Mill Road in Vienna.” [Patch]

County Board Looks at Waiving EV Permit Fees — “Fairfax County supervisors on Oct. 19 directed the county’s Department of Land Development Services to analyze the possibility of waiving permitting fees associated with installation of electric-vehicle infrastructure. The intention is to reduce barriers to switching to environmentally friendly alternatives, said Chairman Jeff McKay (D).” [Sun Gazette]

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Updated at 12:15 p.m.The crash site has been cleared, and all travel lanes on George Washington Memorial Parkway are now open with no delays reported as of noon, according to Metropolitan Area Transportation Operations Coordination.

Earlier: A driver was killed in the crash that shut down southbound George Washington Memorial Parkway in McLean this morning (Friday), the U.S. Park Police says.

Park Police officers responded to the one-car crash on the parkway near the entrance to the CIA headquarters at approximately 5:18 a.m. The driver, who was the vehicle’s sole occupant, was pronounced dead at the scene.

“This incident is currently under investigation,” a U.S. Park Police spokesperson said. “Additional information will be provided as it becomes available.”

Traffic closures remain in effect at the I-495 ramps to southbound George Washington Parkway and Turkey Run, according to police.

Metropolitan Area Transportation Operations Coordination reported at 5:51 a.m. that all southbound lanes on the parkway were blocked between the Capital Beltway and Route 123, slowing traffic to a crawl.

A traffic camera at the I-495 interchange shows congestion on southbound George Washington Parkway after crash (via VDOT)

Ramps from the Inner and Outer Beltway Loops to George Washington Parkway were also closed, the Virginia Department of Transportation said.

https://twitter.com/VaDOTNOVA/status/1451512631483895818

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Updated at 4:50 p.m. — The gas leak at Dolley Madison Library has stopped, and all Fairfax County Fire and Rescue units have returned to service, the department has reported.

Washington Gas said in a statement that it discovered a gas line had been damaged by a contractor, but the company was able to stop the flow of gas around 3:30 p.m., and it’s now working to repair the line. There has been no impact to customers other than the library, and service will be restored there after repairs are complete.

Earlier: Dolley Madison Library and the McLean Community Center have been evacuated due to a gas leak at the library, the Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department says.

Both facilities have been closed, as has a stretch of Ingleside Avenue by Oak Ridge Avenue.

Fire department units are currently on the scene at 1244 Oak Ridge Avenue in McLean. The department says a gas pipeline was struck by workers, but so far, the identity of the workers and the project they were involved with is unclear.

In a 2:33 p.m. update, FCFRD shared that the line is 2 inches in size, and the leak had been stabilized with no injuries reported. Washington Gas has arrived at the scene and is currently working to stop the leak.

MCC says the Old Firehouse Center will still be open for its after school program.

Traffic on Ingleside Avenue by Oak Ridge is being diverted.

David Taube contributed to this report.

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