VDOT, electric utilities ready for snow storm
Electric utilities and the Virginia Department of Transportation are readying for Winter Storm Jonas.
The storm could bring gusty winds and up to two feet of snow, according to the National Weather Service.
“Pre-treating of major primary routes, the most heavily traveled roads, including U.S. [Routes] 29 and 460, has been completed,” said VDOT spokeswoman Paula Jones. “Application of the treatment prevents snow from bonding to the road surface as rapidly and affords crews an opportunity to remove accumulated snow more easily. Equipment and materials have been checked and plans have been reviewed.”
She said VDOT crews would be working in 12-hour shifts during and after the storm. “Their goal is to have all state-maintained roads passable within 48 hours after a storm ends. Passable does not mean that there will necessarily be bare pavement,” she said.
Southside Electric Cooperative, Central Virginia Electric Cooperative and Dominion Virginia Power — all which serve Central and Southside Virginia — are also preparing for the storm.
“Members are urged to prepare for a possible prolonged, multi-day outage restoration process. Initial outage response and restoration may be hindered by heavy snow and high winds, delaying repairs to storm-damaged electrical infrastructure,” Southside Electric said in a press release. “SEC has pre-staged the necessary materials and personnel, which we anticipate will be needed to restore power to our members over several days, beginning Friday. These include 75 additional contract electric linemen, 25 additional contract tree-trimming personnel, 20 additional mutual-aid linemen from other co-ops (requested), 100 full-time SEC field personnel (includes 65 SEC linemen).”
The cooperative said that significant ice and snow accumulation, coupled with high winds on Friday and Saturday, are expected to cause widespread outages into the weekend. “Broken poles and downed lines are expected, and hazardous travel conditions may initially delay outage restoration efforts.”
“Additional crews are being sent to the areas expected to be most affected, trucks are stocked and fueled, and preparations are being made to activate the company’s three regional storm response centers and corporate emergency center to support outage restoration,” Dominon said in a release.
“Additional crews are being sent to the areas expected to be most affected, trucks are stocked and fueled, and preparations are being made to activate the company’s three regional storm response centers and corporate emergency center to support outage restoration.”
“Field crews and equipment are ready to go if necessary,” Central Virginia Electric said in a press release. “Dispatchers and field supervisors are prepared to coordinate power restoration efforts. Member service representatives are available to answer member calls and enter outage tickets. Sixteen crews from sister electric cooperatives in Mississippi are traveling to CVEC to provide assistance should outage restoration be necessary.”