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Major Flooding Paralyzes Northern Virginia

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Heavy – perhaps historic – rains and flooding are inundating parts of Northern Virginia tonight. Some Huntington residents are being urged to evacuate due to flooding. As of 7:35pm, the Beltway was closed in both directions in Alexandria. WTOP reports Cameron Run threatens to overtop the Beltway. Check the Washington Post’s @PostLocal Twitter feed for the latest updates.

According to the Post’s Capital Weather Gang, “Some rainfall totals in southern Fairfax County in just the [6-7pm] hour have been 3-4″!” The photo at left was taken tonight above the Reston north commuter parking lot for the Fairfax Connector.

And it’s not expected to improve much in the next few hours. CWG says, “Areas currently experiencing heavy rain may not see signficant improvement until after midnight. Rain is not moving quickly. This may have some in­cred­ibly bad consequences.”

I just drove from Richmond to my home in Falls Church. It was sunny when we left Richmond, but the drive from Fredericksburg north featured some of the heaviest rain I’ve ever driven through – and I drove through Hurricane Floyd in 1999. I couldn’t see tail lights further than 50 yards in front of my car. Fortunately, everyone slowed down to about 35mph & we didn’t see any accidents.

How was your drive home? What are you seeing in your community? Let us know in comments.

UPDATE 8:46pm: @BreakingNews cites AP as reporting floods have killed two people in Northern Virginia. The Washington Post reports one of the victims was the child earlier reported washed away by Piney Branch Creek in Vienna. Reports of I66 west closed near Route 50 & VRE trains being forced to turn back on the Manassas line due to flash flooding.

UPDATE 9:40pm: CWG reports Fairfax County Schools will be closed on Friday.

Photo via Laura Cochran

  • blue bronc

    The American Red Cross is opening a shelter in Hunnington right now.  Plenty of area around Mt. Vernon is under evacuation.

  • totallynext

    due to flooding – people are stranded on base.

  • totallynext

    for Huntington and Belleview residences.   They can also bring there pets – Animal control will keep overnight.

    See fairfax county alerts.

  • Getting home (from Merrifield to Burke, VA) took over an hour.  The back roads were out of the question due to creek crossings, so I had to take the Beltway.  495 was jammed because of a combination of accidents and water covering several lanes of traffic.

    Accotink Creek where it crosses Braddock Rd. had turned into a river wider than the entire Dominion Power easement (at least 300 feet) and flowing over the road.

    By the time I got to Burke Road, the main road leading to my house, I found that it was flooded on both ends, practically isolating my house in the middle.  I almost had to abandon my car and walk, but I managed to drive through it.

    Pictured below:  the 495 entrance ramps from Fairview Park Dr. by US Rt. 50 – the northbound ramp was bad choice for that driver because even if he made it, the traffic on the inner loop wasn’t going anywhere.

  • Where’s all the rain coming from? Here’s a good explanation from CWG’s Jason Samenow. Short version: Don’t cross the streams. It would be bad.