Expect crowded roads, planes, and trains

By Andy Jenks - bio | email
Posted by Terry Alexander - email

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - Gas is nearly a dollar more expensive per gallon this year than it was a year ago, but that doesn't appear to be stopping people from hitting the roads tonight.

Gas is going for an average of $2.44 in Richmond today. That's up from $1.56 this time last year. So, is that a problem this year? Not really - if you take a look at the highway, and Triple-A is telling us people can expect a lot of company on all modes of transportation.

Robin Doran is heading to northern Virginia and she never thought twice about taking the train.

"I just think I-95 is going to be heavily congested because the holiday is falling over a weekend, so it makes more sense to ride the train," said Robin.

Apparently, Robin's in good company. Late this morning, the Staples Mill station was packed. Triple-A says, it'll look like this, in a lot of other places, too.

"Everyone out there can expect lots of company on the roadways, lots of company in the airports, so patience is a virtue this time of year," said Martha M. Meade, AAA Mid-Atlantic.

38% of Virginians - or, slightly, more than three million, will travel at least fifty miles this weekend, including many who have been cooped up since the recent snowfall. Bad weather in the Midwest, though, is serving as a reminder that even on the east coast, not everyone will get a smooth experience.

"The plane traveling out of Richmond has to get to Richmond, it may come from the Midwest, it may come from the west coast. Once one area has any kind of inclement weather, there's a tremendous domino effect that happens with airlines," said Meade.

So Triple-A is recommending you give yourself a little extra time to get through the airport, or the interstate, but if you're like Robin - maybe you'll just let someone else do the navigating, for you.

"It's easy, it's convenient, the stops work for us, and it's not that expensive," Robin said.

An Amtrak power outage in New Jersey did not appear to be affecting travel in Richmond. Only a five a.m. train to New York was delayed. All the rest were running on time this morning and no significant delays or cancellations were reported at RIC as of mid-afternoon. 

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