VSP responds to 360+ crashes; slick pavement to remain threat into Sunday

VSP responds to 360+ crashes; slick pavement to remain threat into Sunday

RICHMOND, Va. (WWBT) - Virginia State Police responded to more than 360 vehicle crashes on Saturday as an ice storm impacted the commonwealth, and officials are advising drivers to avoid travel.

Between midnight and 9 p.m. on Saturday, VSP responded to 366 crashes and 195 disabled vehicles statewide.

Downed tree on Interstate 95 Henrico County on Feb. 13, 2021.
Downed tree on Interstate 95 Henrico County on Feb. 13, 2021. (Source: Virginia State Police)

On I-85 in Dinwiddie, drivers were stuck for hours due to an evening crash near Dewitt. Late into the night, travel was still impacted due to power lines and tree limbs covering the interstate.

Slick pavement will remain a threat for drivers into Sunday.

Saturday night, Forrest Hill Avenue in South Richmond was pitch black with electricity out, businesses closed, and no street lights.

Nearby on Westower Drive, a tree blocked the roadway. This is the case on streets all over the area.

“It’s really icy. It’s frozen,” driver Tommy McFadden said.

The Nickel Bridge remains closed for that very reason.

“We were supposed to go down that road but yeah,” he said preparing to detour.

The Boulevard in Colonial Heights had to close all the way to the MLK Bridge due to icy conditions. Some Richmond fast food restaurants either closed or closed early Saturday night.

As power crews worked tirelessly to restore electricity, some people decided to take advantage of the slippery slopes to go sledding in Forest Hill Park.

Kevin Schluckbier is doing something different. Since he can’t drive over the Nickel Bridge, he brought his daughter to come to walk over it.

“It’s been a couple of years since I’ve been able to do this…It’s a unique experience without having any cars coming through. At the same time, it’s also a little treacherous. I can’t even imagine cars or bikes trying to navigate their way down this hill at this moment. It’s hard for us to walk up and down here,” he said.

As temperatures drop below freezing overnight, wet roads will become extremely icy Sunday.

Be on the lookout for VDOT vehicles and power crews that are working and try to give them plenty of space.

If you must travel, follow these winter weather tips from the Virginia Department of Transportation.

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