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News
Heat wave expected to hit area this weekend

The temperature is expected to climb into the upper 90s Thursday through Sunday, according to the National Weather Service. Friday and Saturday are expected to be the hottest days, with heat indices around 100 degrees Fahrenheit.

 

The National Weather Service also issued an Air Quality Alert for today:

The Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments in association
with Maryland Department of the Environment, Virginia Department
of Environmental Quality, and District Department of Environment
has issued a Code ORANGE Air Quality Alert Wednesday for
the DC metro area.

A Code Orange Air Quality Alert means that air pollution
concentrations within the region may become unhealthy for
sensitive groups. Sensitive groups include children, people
suffering from asthma, heart disease or other lung diseases and
the elderly. The effects of air pollution can be minimized by
avoiding strenuous activity or exercise outdoors.

 

News
K9 Steel gets a bullet and stab protective vest

STAFFORD — A Stafford County K9 has new body armor thanks to a charitable donation. 

From the Stafford sheriff’s office: 

The Stafford County Sheriff’s Office K9 Steel has received a bullet and stab protective vest thanks to a charitable donation from non-profit organization Vested Interest in K9s, Inc.

The program is open to dogs actively employed in the U.S. with law enforcement or related agencies who are certified and at least 20 months of age. New K9 graduates, as well as K9s with expired vests, are eligible to participate.

The donation to provide one protective vest for a law enforcement K9 is $1,050. Each vest has a value between $1,795 – $2,234 and a five-year warranty and an average weight of 4-5 lbs. There are an estimated 30,000 law enforcement K9s throughout the United States.  (more…)

Traffic
Overnight lane closures scheduled as paving begins on Mine road

From Virginia Department of Transportation:

Work is starting this week to pave Route 684 (Mine Road) in Stafford County between Route 610 (Garrisonville Road) and Exeter Lane, just south of Northampton Boulevard.

 

Drivers will encounter single lane closures between 7:30 p.m. and 5 a.m. nightly on Monday through Friday evenings.

 

This week, crews will start by milling the existing pavement. Drivers will encounter a slightly rougher driving surface on a temporary basis until new asphalt is applied.

 

Mine Road carries approximately 16,000 vehicles a day, on average. Night work was selected for this paving project to avoid congestion during peak daytime travel times.

News
Kline Memorials, of Manassas, builds Stafford veterans memorial

STAFFORD — The new Stafford County Armed Services Memorial was a quick build.

Officials awarded the contract to construct the $838,000 memorial at the county government center to Kline Memorials, of Manassas. It was a natural fit for a company that in recent years had won contracts with the National Museum of the Marine Corps at Quantico, Arlington National Cemetery, and the CIA.

Designed by Aaron Brown, who attended North Stafford High School, Burroughs worked with his team of architects and stone masons to make the memorial a reality. Some design elements were initially dropped due to budget constraints, but a working group charged with bringing the monument to life raised the additional funds to put them back into the plans.

“There was a lot of giving and take, but everyone got everything they wanted on their wish list,’ said Burroughs.

It typically takes about six months to construct a memorial like Stafford’s. Five years after the memorial was conceived, a groundbreaking for the memorial in March, and didn’t get their building permits until April 1, leaving about half the time necessary to make the July 15 opening date. (more…)

News
Stafford Armed Services Memorial opens

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STAFFORD — Lloyd Willis and his wife searched for their brick.

The couple from Colonial Beach purchased the memorial stone to support the new Stafford County Armed Services Memorial. Willis, 92, served in the Army in World War II and Korea.

“It’s important that we do this to set the example for the future of our country,” said Willis. When he enlisted at age 18, Willis said it was his brother who set the example for him — one of service to the nation when Germany and Japan threatened the U.S. and the world.

He was one of the thousands who came to the dedication of the new memorial at 10 a.m. Saturday, July 15 at the Stafford County Government Center. Hundreds sat underneath large tents, while others took shelter under shade trees to avoid the hot summer sun.

Veterans from Korea and Vietnam wore hats, and some leather vests and jackets. Active service members wore their uniforms, and all listed to music played by Quantico Marine Corps Band. (more…)

Traffic
‘Ba da da da da… I’m leavin it’: McDonald’s shuttered to make way for DDI

STAFFORD — A once bustling McDonalds on Courthouse Road now looks like the restaurant at the center of a ghost town. 

The company shuttered the restaurant to make for a new diverging diamond interchange  (DDI) to be constructed by VDOT. The interchange is similar that opened this past spring in Haymarket.

The McDonalds, once popular with highway travelers, and three other gas stations all near the intersection Interstate 95 and Courthouse Road at mile post 140 are all closed ahead of the project that will widen the roadway. The DDI is a new type of interchange that places traffic on the opposite side of the road when crossing over the interstate highway.

The new interchange will be located just south of the existing traditional diamond. Construction is expected to be completed by July 2020 at a cost of $100 million.

 

 

News
Heavy storms move across the region

As predicted, strong to severe thunderstorms are moving across the region this afternoon. 

 

While no storms have triggered a severe thunderstorm warning from the National Weather Service the storms are packing high winds and heavy rain. 

There have been some reports of power lines down, including on a portion of Garrisonville Road in Stafford County where a Dominion power pole fell onto the roadway. We’re still working to get more information on this from Stafford authorities. 

Send us your storm photos.

The weather outside is frightful now, but expect clearing as we head into the nighttime hours. 

5:45 p.m Wires down in front of Giant Food on Town and Country Drive in Stafford County

5:55 p.m. Westbound Garrisonville Road in Stafford County closed at Tech Parkway, wires down

Wires down on Flatford Road in North Stafford

6 p.m. Lots of power outages reported. Here is what Dominion Energy reports, and here is what NOVEC reports. 

 

 

News
Horseback riding instructor indicted for sexual battery

From Stafford County Sheriff’s Office:

The Stafford Sheriff’s Office announces the arrest of Boris Gokovski, age 64 of Stafford County. Gokovski was indicted by a Stafford County Grand Jury on July 5, 2017 on four counts of Sexual Battery. He was arrested on those indictments on July 12, 2017 and incarcerated at the Rappahannock Regional Jail on a $5,000 secure bond. Gokovski has since bonded out. He is scheduled for arraignment on July 20, 2017.

The indictments against Gokovski stem from a complaint the Sheriff’s Office received in May of 2017 from a female victim who reported that Gokovski sexually assaulted her at the B&R Ranch located in Stafford County. Gokovski is one of the owners of the B&R Ranch as well as a horseback riding instructor. (more…)