A combination of cold, wind and many snow-covered roads meant conditions were slick to start Friday, says WTOP Traffic's Jack Taylor.
Road conditions have improved since the morning hours, when many roads were still snow-packed or slush covered. Interstates have had a chance to dry out and the bright sun is helping to melt away any remaining snow elsewhere.
And crews will continue to plow and treat roads ahead of tonight's bitter cold temperature, which could turn any wet, slushy roads to ice.
Snow walloped the area Thursday, with nearly a half foot in the inner suburbs and more than a foot in parts of Maryland. The snowfall eclipsed records at Dulles and Reagan National.
High pressure is moving in through the afternoon and the bright sun will melt some of the snow, but temperatures won't rise above the freezing mark, says Storm Watch 7 Meteorologist Lauryn Ricketts.
Virtually all schools in the D.C. area have closed and many businesses in the region are following suit, allowing employees to telework. The federal government opened two hours late, which contributed to a late delay.
Those who ventured out encountered major delays along some of the interstates because of morning crashes, which occurred due to icy conditions.
Ice-covered roads were reported in Arlington, which effectively ran out of salt.
Drivers should also clear all of the snow off their cars before getting on the road, including the roof, hood and trunk areas before leaving the driveway or garage.
Montgomery County’s Ride
On bus will operate under a normal schedule Friday.
Fairfax Connector is running regular weekday service Friday with some exceptions:
In Alexandria, DASH buses and the King Street Trolley will not run until 8 a.m. Friday. They say a decision will be made on the schedule soon.
Annapolis Transit suspended all service at 6:30 p.m. Thursday. No word yet on Friday's schedule.
Amtrak will run on a modified service in the Northeast Corridor Friday.
VRE service Operating "S" Schedule for Friday.
MARC-Penn Line S schedule on Friday, No Camden or Brunswick Line service.
DC Circulator has suspended service on all routes.
Safe shoveling tips
WASHINGTON - This heavy, wet snow can be dangerous to shovel.
Experts say it is best to think like a snow plow, and push the snow to the side instead of trying to lift it.
Michele Vita, a physical therapist at the MedStar National Rehabilitation Hospital, says if possible, do what the road crews do to keep main arteries open: Shovel every time the snow accumulates 2 or 3 inches instead of waiting for the storm to stop.
Vita says the most common injuries related to snow shoveling involve the back and are usually the result of "poor body mechanics when you are trying to lift the snow."
Vita says bend at the knees and keep your back as straight as possible.
"The best way to lift the snow is to grab the shovel as close to the shovel part of the handle as you can, with one hand. And then have your other hand about 12 inches back to help with stabilization," she says.
It's also important to remember that shoveling this kind of snow is strenuous exercise, and it is important to take the same precautions you would at the gym. Warm-up before you go outside to shovel to get your blood pumping -- something as simple as walking up and down stairs will do.
Vita says some gentle stretching when you are done is also a good idea.
If you experience mild soreness, icing the spot can help. But if there is pain, call your doctor.
- Paula Wolfson, WTOP
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