Heavy Snow Leaves Drivers Stuck on I-95 for Up to 16 Hours

Drivers were left stranded in their cars for up to 16 hours as of Tuesday morning as a snow blizzard forced traffic to a standstill on the Beltway Outer Loop in Washington, D.C.

An NBC News 4 report detailed the difficulty that drivers faced on Monday, January 3 as well as the efforts being made to clear the snow and resume traffic.

According to the report, the Beltway Outer Loop approaching the Woodrow Wilson Bridge was clogged with cars not being able to make the incline to MD-210.

Traffic did begin to move slowly in the early evening at around 6:30 p.m. but the Virginia State Police still advised against traveling by car in the area.

The Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) took to Twitter to inform drivers that snow plows would be working through Monday night to make the roads safe to drive.

In a tweet, they wrote: "VDOT crews will be working through the night to clear and treat roads.

"If you must travel, please give our crews space to safely work. Keep a safe distance behind trucks and other equipment that's plowing or treating the road and never pass a snowplow or spreader."

In addition to the travel delays and standstills, the heavy snow has also resulted in multiple crashes and fallen trees causing further disruption.

VDOT Fredericksburg on Monday night informed drivers that the I-95 northbound and southbound lanes were stopped due to disabled vehicles and downed trees. In a Twitter post they called on motorists to avoid the area to better allow assist crews to deal with the situation.

The VDOT Fredericksburg Twitter page also posted images of I-95 to highlight the poor driving conditions. The picture showed poor visibility conditions and heavy snow on the cars attempting to drive through the road.

The picture was captioned: "This is why you should avoid travel. This is I-95 city side near Rappahannock River. Heavy snow continues to fall with our crews and emergency responders in the same conditions.

"Additional staffing, equipment and resources are being shifted to #FXBG area to respond to winter storm."

On Tuesday morning, VDOT confirmed that I-95 would remain closed in the Fredericksburg area.

In a tweet, VDOT wrote: "I-95 remains closed in the Fredericksburg area. Snow plows and tow trucks are on the scene.

"Motorists should plan to avoid travel on I-95 in this area until lanes reopen and significant congestion clears the area."

The VA State Police tweeted this update and added that "incoming traffic at Exit 152/Dumfries Road in Prince Wm Co. to Exit 104/Carmela Church in Caroline Co."

Newsweek has contacted the Virginia State Police Department and Virginia Department of Transportation for comment.

Snow Washington
Trucks plow snow during a winter storm over the capital region on January 3, 2022 in Washington, DC. The heavy snow leaves drivers stuck on I-95 for up to 16 hours. Getty/Pablo Porciuncula