A winter storm blanketed Arlington in snow Saturday and more is on the way.
The National Weather Service reports 3 to 4 inches fell in and around Washington, DC with 5 to 6 inches hitting the ground in parts of Northern Virginia. At Reagan National Airport, meteorologists recorded winds reaching 47 miles per hour Sunday as pressure from the West pushed toward the Atlantic in the wake of the storm. The gusty weather brought temperatures in some parts of the county down to zero, but the cold weather didn't keep Arlingtonians in-doors. In the Westover neighborhood and throughout the county, children hit the hills for sledding and even some grown-ups found time to play in the snow. In Rosslyn, Di Pagnotti found herself shushing around on cross country skis.
"It just makes it easier to get around on the ice," she said, smiling through the chilly air.
A winter storm warning was in effect over the weekend as road crews braved the temperatures to clear the snow before rush hour on Monday.
"The timing for this storm was really perfect," said Ryan Hall, spokesman for the Virginia Department of Transportation in Northern Virginia. "It was over the weekend, so the crews had plenty of time to clear the roads before Monday."
V-DOT used about 1,300 vehicles to clear the more than 15,000 miles of roadway it handles in Northern Virginia. Hall said V-DOT, with a budget of $24.7 million for the region alone, has stockpiled 60,000 tons of salt and 20,000 tons of sand to lay down on icy roads. Officials have yet to tally how much is left after the storm but Hall said the supply should last for the rest of the winter.
"The only time we start to worry about the stockpile is if we get a major, week-long storm," he said.
The region has received less snow than normal for the month of January. According to Brian Peloquin, a National Weather Service spokesman, Reagan Airport has recorded about 3.9 inches of snow this winter. The average is 6 inches. Arlington, he said, can expect much more in the coming months.
"This storm was really a multi-faceted system," Peloquin said. "You had the snow and then, after that left, you had the winds coming in on top of that, which made for some very low temperatures."
Dave Hundelt, the county's acting bureau chief for water, streets and sewers, is asking that property owners be sure to clear ice and snow off sidewalks and drive-ways. The county's supply of salt and de-icing chemicals was nearly depleted during the storm, he added, but more was on the way as of Monday.