Winter Storm Live Updates: 'No People Stranded' Along I-95, After 24+ Hours Standstill

Live Updates
  • States across the Mid-Atlantic are digging out from a massive snowstorm that left a traffic nightmare on roadways, cancelled flights and forced schools, government buildings and COVID-19 test sites to close.
  • Hundreds of drivers were stranded for hours along a 50-mile stretch of I-95 in Stafford County, Virginia overnight. U.S. Sen. Tim Kaine was among those caught in the shutdown, he was on the road for 27 hours.
  • More than 250,000 customers are still without power Tuesday, including 208,000 in Virginia. Dominion Energy urged customers to prepare for the possibility of being without power for "multiple days."
  • Many states are again urging drivers to stay off the road amid hazardous conditions.
I-95, snow, motorists
Hundreds of motorists were stranded all night in snow and freezing temperatures along a 50-mile stretch of Interstate 95 after a crash involving six tractor-trailers in Virginia, where authorities were struggling Tuesday to reach them. Above, motorists sit stranded on I-95 near Fredericksburg, Virginia, on Tuesday, Jan. 4. WJLA via AP

Live updates for this blog have ended.

'No people stranded' along I-95, after 24+ hours standstill

There are no stranded drivers along I-95 in Stafford County as of late Tuesday, the Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) Fredericksburg said around 5 PM Tuesday.

"There are no people stranded still on I-95," the tweet reads.

"Less than 20 vehicles left to be removed from the interstate before plow trains will come through to remove snow and ice from the travel lanes."

Virginia Sen. Tim Kaine was among the drivers stuck on I-95, Kaine was on the road for 27 hours.

"I'm sure there's going to be a lot of questions about OK, what happened?" Kaine said during a phone interview with CNN Tuesday.

"Was it weather forecasting, was it inadequate pre-treatment of roads?"

Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam said he has been in constant contact with emergency personnel Tuesday.

"Teams will continue to work until everyone is home safe. If you do not have to be on the road tonight, please stay home," Northam said.

218K still without power in Virginia, efforts slowed by hazardous conditions

Power is still out for more than 218,000 customers in Virginia late Tuesday afternoon, PowerOutage.US reports.

Dominion Energy says it cannot provide updated restoration times until crews are able to reach worksites and assess damage. The efforts are being slowed by hazardous conditions including icy roadways, road closures and downed trees.

Additional crews from across the U.S. are continuing to join Dominion Energy to assist in Virginia.

So far, power has been restored to 280,000 customers.

"We know that you are tired and cold, and it is extremely difficult to be without power during this time," a Dominion Energy statement to customers reads.

"We will keep working 24/7 until everyone is back on."

Lows are forecast to dip below freezing Tuesday night, with highs only reaching the upper 30s.

Senator Kaine arrives at Capitol after 27 hour drive

U.S. Sen. Tim Kaine finally arrived at the U.S. Capitol late Tuesday afternoon after being on the road for 27 hours. Kaine was among the drivers stranded on I-95 through Stafford County, Virginia.

"At some point it switched from a miserable travel day into kind of a survival mode day for me," Kaine said during a phone interview with CNN Tuesday.

At that point, Kaine said had some popcorn but no liquids in his car.

"I'm planning on eating a lot and using the restroom as soon as I pull in," Kaine said.

During the interview at 3 PM, Kaine said he just got back onto the portion of I-95 that recently reopened.

"I'm going 60," Kaine said. "I haven't gone 60 since about 2 PM yesterday afternoon."

Kaine said he was "very happy" to arrive at the Capitol and would work on voting rights legislation later Tuesday.

Officials working to remove disabled vehicles from snow covered freeways as conditions improve

Officials are still working to clear I-95 after thousands of drivers were stranded due to icy weather conditions.

The Virginia Department of Transportation said in a Tweet, "We're making significant headway to remove disabled vehicles, and tractor trailers from I-95 then plow trains will come through to remove snow and ice. I-95 NB still closed between exit 104/Rt. 207 in Caroline to PW. I-95 southbound is closed at exit 152 to exit 136/Centreport Pkwy."

A winter storm warning is in effect until Thursday with heavy snow expected

A winter Storm Warning is in effect starting at 4 a.m. Wednesday morning until 7 a.m. Thursday morning.

Up to 4 to 8+ inches of snow is expected with strong winds 40 to 50 mph.

Weather officials are predicting high travel impacts, whiteout conditions, and isolated power outages.

Drivers share supplies with others stranded on I-95

Offers of food and water were posted on social media for drivers who were stranded on I-95 in Stafford County, Virginia overnight.

Conservative news organization Reagan Battalion helped share the offers on Twitter. Some were from other drivers and truckers who were also stuck, others were from people near I-95.

U.S. transportation officials ask for estimated reopening on I-95

The U.S. Department of Transportation asked the Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) for updates Tuesday regarding the traffic nightmare on I-95 in Stafford County.

In a tweet, USDOT said the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) is in communication with VDOT and has asked about "their unmet needs, estimated time for reopening, and what their plans are for assisting motorists."

"FHWA will continue to monitor, ready to assist VADOT as they work to resolve this situation."

Virginia State Police say "slow but steady progress" is being made at the I-95 109 mile marker emergency crossover in Caroline County. Crews are still working to free stranded drivers and clear abandoned vehicles.

More flight delays, Atlantic City Airport reopens

Flight delays and cancellations continue across U.S. airports Tuesday, in part due to winter weather.

FlightAware reports close to 1,400 cancellations within, into or out of the U.S. Tuesday. More than 3,000 flights were cancelled Monday.

As of 1:35 PM local time Tuesday, FlightAware reported departure delays of about 30 minutes at Reagan National, 40 minute delays at Newark Liberty International and 40 minute delays at Washington Dulles International Airports.

Atlantic City International Airport also reopened Monday night at 9 PM after being closed earlier in the day due to inclement weather.

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The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) cautioned travelers that parts of the South and Mid-Atlantic could be impacted by more snow on Thursday.

Detours begin on I-95 following hours-long standstill

The Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) Fredericksburg says crews are making progress detouring traffic along I-95 in Stafford County, nearly 22 hours since it first reported initial closures.

VDOT Fredericksburg shared a video around noon local time Tuesday, showing cars finally moving.

"Northbound traffic continues to move towards Rt. 207 in Caroline. Drivers can either choose to stay on 207 NB to 301 or to Rt. 1. Again, expect major congestion on these alternates routes."

VDOT crews still need to remove vehicles, including the tractor-trailers from Monday's crash which sparked the standstill. Once that's completed, packed snow and ice can be removed.

Snow day in DC area after winter storm

Monday's snowstorm meant a fun snow day for some in the Washington D.C. area.

Waldorf, MD received a whopping 13.5" inches of snow as of Monday afternoon, WTOP reports.

The Smithsonian National Zoo in Washington D.C. was closed Monday, but Panda cub Xiao Qi Ji had fun rolling in the snow!

"Our giant panda cub was a little wary during his first encounter with snow. This morning, the 16-month-old plowed face-first into the fresh powder, rolled around and relished the year's first #SnowDay," the zoo posted on Twitter.

Schools and government buildings were closed Monday in the nation's capitol, many stepped out to capture the snow-covered sights and take out the dogs.

Stranded drivers low on fuel, water along I-95

The Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) is working to reopen I-95 "as soon as possible," as hundreds of drivers have been stranded in their vehicles for hours.

A crash involving six tractor-trailers amid the snowstorm Monday afternoon caused the standstill along the 50-mile stretch of highway.

"Traffic is being detoured to the nearest interchange between Caroline Co & Prince William Co.," VDOT tweeted around 11:30 AM local time Tuesday.

"Work continues to remove disabled vehicles & tractor trailers from the travel lanes."

Drivers posted on social media, some saying they've been stuck for more than 18 hours. One man said he needs insulin, many others say they have no food or water and low fuel.

Outages across five states leave 356K without power

More than 356,000 customers are still without power across five states from Maryland to Georgia, following Monday's snowstorm.

In Virginia, more than a quarter million customers are without power.

Dominion Energy said it may take "multiple days" to restore power in the hardest-hit areas. The company said crews from across the country will assist with restoration beginning Tuesday.

The latest figures provided by PowerOutage.US show the following outages, as of Tuesday morning:

  • Virginia: 266,000
  • Maryland: 27,000
  • North Carolina: 26,500
  • Tennessee: 23,800
  • Georgia: 12,600

Senator Kaine among those stranded on I-95 in Virginia

U.S. Sen. Tim Kaine is among the hundreds of drivers stranded on I-95 in Virginia, saying he's been on the road for more than 19 hours.

Early Tuesday, Kaine tweeted, "I started my normal 2 hour drive to DC at 1pm yesterday. 19 hours later, I'm still not near the Capitol."

Kaine said he is frustrated, but not in "serious trouble." He added his office is in touch with the Virginia Department of Transportation.

He shared a picture from inside a vehicle Tuesday morning showing an orange on the dashboard.

"A CT family returning in a packed car from Florida walked by in the middle of the night handing out oranges as we were stopped for hours on I-95. Bless them!"

Hundreds of drivers stuck overnight along I-95 in Virginia

Hundreds of drivers were stuck along a 50-mile stretch of I-95 in Virginia overnight Tuesday due to the winter storm.

VA State Police tweeted, "To safely reach stranded motorists & get traffic moving once again, I-95 north & south is closed to incoming traffic at Exit 152/Dumfries Rd. in Prince Wm Co. to Exit 104/Carmel Church in Caroline Co."

"Crews are mobilizing now to start taking people stopped on interstate off nearby interchanges to bring them to alternate routes," VDOT Fredericksburg tweeted overnight.

Early Tuesday, Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam posted, "An emergency message is going to all stranded drivers connecting them to support, and the state is working with localities to open warming shelters as needed."

Snowstorm leaves drivers stuck in DC area

The winter storm caused havoc for drivers Monday in the Washington D.C. region.

NBC4 Washington reported hundreds of drivers were sitting at the Beltway Outer Loop approaching the Woodrow Wilson Bridge Monday morning. Some drivers reported being stuck for more than two hours.

Washington D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser urged drivers to avoid the road unless absolutely necessary. Bowser extended the Snow Emergency through 7 AM Tuesday, it was set to expire Monday night.

Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) Fredericksburg also urged drivers to avoid travel. VDOT tweeted pictures of the snowy conditions from I-95 near the Rappahannock River.

Northern Virginia power company estimates power restoration will take days

Virginia power company, Dominion Energy stated that power restoration could take days.

As of 4:15 p.m. more than 150,000 customers in Northern Virginia remain without power after Monday's storm brought blizzard like weather conditions and heavy snow to the area.

Dominion spokeswoman Peggy Fox said in a Tweet, "Wet, heavy snow on branches has wreaked havoc on power lines. Our crews will work 24/7 as safely and quickly as possible to restore power. It will be a multi-day effort."

Atlantic City Airport closed, hundreds in NJ without power

New Jersey state leaders gave an update on the winter storm during a press conference Monday afternoon.

"The most significant South Jersey snow event in almost exactly four years," New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy said.

Atlantic City International Airport is currently closed due to the weather. The airport will "reassess" at 9 PM, according to a post on Facebook.

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Murphy says conditions should improve early evening but urged residents to stay off the road if possible. He added there is some coastal flooding and it "remains a concern."

Murphy said the highest snow accumulation was recorded in Absecon, totaling 13 inches.

As of 4:30 PM, more than 3,300 outages were reported. New Jersey State Police Superintendent Pat Callahan said a car crash in Barnegat caused about half of those outages which are expected to be restored by 6 PM.

State police have responded to thousands of emergency calls due to winter storms

Virginia State Police are advising people to avoid driving, unless absolutely unnecessary. As evening approaches and temperatures drop into the teens, anything that's melted during the day will freeze overnight and cause extremely dangerous, icy road conditions.

Since 12:01 a.m. Monday (Jan. 3), Virginia State Police emergency communications centers across the state have fielded over 2,000 total calls for service. Of those 2,000 calls, 72 are ongoing traffic crashes and 69 disabled vehicles that VSP troopers are still on scene with or responding to as of 3:30 p.m.

Power outages continue to affect thousands after winter storms grappled eastern states in the U.S.

According to PowerOutage.US, more than 800,000 people are now without power after winter storms swept through multiple states in northeast United States.

This comes after snow began falling on Sunday night in parts of Alabama, Kentucky and Tennessee. As much as 15 centimeters accumulated in northern Alabama, where authorities reported that multiple roads were blocked because of icy spots and car accidents. Businesses, schools and government offices were also closed until mid-morning to allow time for temperatures to rise above freezing.

D.C. man seen skiing in snow in the midst of northeast snow storms

As blizzard-like conditions covered Washington D.C. streets in more than half a foot of snow, causing many closures Monday, a man was seen skiing near the Washington Monument.

Florida sees record breaking temperature drop due to snow storms

Temperatures dropped rapidly in Florida overnight as winter storms moved through parts of the sunshine state.

Okaloosa Sheriff's Office captured moments as the snow began to fall. According to the sheriff's office tweet, temperatures dropped from 75 degrees to freezing causing snowfall within hours.

Several states close COVID test sites due to winter storm

Several COVID-19 testing and vaccination sites are closed Monday across Washington D.C., Virginia and Maryland due to the winter storm.

The D.C. Department of Health tweeted that all COVID-19 testing is cancelled Monday, including "the four firehouses announced last night will no longer be distributing at-home antigen and at-home PCR tests."

The Virginia Department of Health closed all of its community vaccination centers on Monday. The Department will decide by Monday afternoon if those centers will reopen Tuesday.

The Maryland Department of Health closed five state-run testing and vaccination sites Monday, adding operations could also be impacted on Tuesday.

Snow forces ground stop at Reagan, BWI airports

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) issued a ground stop Monday for flights bound for Reagan National Airport and Baltimore/Washington International Airport (BWI) due to snow and ice.

Update 3:30 PM: The FAA has lifted the ground stop for flights bound to Reagan National Airport.

At 1:49 PM local time, Reagan Airport tweeted, "The airport continues to be under an @FAANews issued ground stop. Please check with your airline on the status of your flight before coming to the airport."

Monday morning, BWI Airport showed crews working to keep the airfield surfaces clear and cautioned flight schedules were being impacted by snow. The ground stop at BWI is expected to expire at 12:30 PM, according to CBS Baltimore.

As of 1:45 PM, FlightAware reported more than 2,700 flight cancellations within, into or out of the U.S. Monday.

Schools in D.C. close ahead of inclement weather

Monday, District of Columbia Public Schools announced that schools will be closed until Thursday, January 6 due to inclement weather.

Mutiple northeast U.S. states issued coastal flood advisory as storms approach

As of Monday morning, a coastal flood advisory has been issued for most of New Jersey, New York City, and all of Long Island.

High tides are expected to bring up to half a foot of water above ground level in areas near the shoreline and waterfront.

The southern shore of Long Island could see a few inches of snow, while New York City could see about an inch of snow according to weather officials.

Thousands are without power in states across the U.S. due to winter storms

According to poweroutage.us, more than 500,000 homes and businesses have lost electricity in portions of the Carolinas, Georgia, and Tennessee.

AccuWeather said there is the potential for 6-12 inches in the core of the storm's heavy snow.

Parts of southern New Jersey, eastern Virginia to the eastern shore of Maryland, and Delaware are expected to see those same amounts of massive snow fall.

Many flights canceled due to winter storm moving through eastern U.S.

Over 1,800 flights have been canceled Monday in the U.S. due to winter storm alerts.

According to FlightAware, as of Monday morning, airlines had already issued 861 delays for flights in and out of the U.S.

FlightAware also noted that Southwest canceled 437 flights, JetBlue reported 136 cancellations, United recorded 103 cancellations, Delta called off 78 flights and American Airlines canceled 36 trips.