Traffic & Transit

Emergency Service Plan Now in Effect for all PRTC Buses

News
New OmniLink buses that serve Prince William County, Manassas, and Manassas Park. The buses have a new look more aligned with the overall color scheme for the Potomac and Rappahannock Transportation Commission. [Submitted photo]

PRTC will put its emergency service plan (ESP) into effect for all of its buses at noon today.

Only its OmniLink local buses in Prince William, Manassas, and Manassas Park, had been running on the ESP.

More from PRTC:

Starting at NOON, PRTC’s Snow Emergency Service Plan will be in effect for OmniRide, Metro Direct, OmniLink and Cross County Connector buses. Rides on ALL PRTC buses will be FREE.

*OMNIRIDE passengers should take Metrorail to the appropriate Metro stations, where buses will be waiting. All buses on the Manassas OmniRide, Tysons Corner OmniRide, Manassas Metro Direct and Linton Hall Metro Direct routes will operate to and from the West Falls Church Metrorail station only. All other OmniRide routes and the Prince William Metro Direct will operate to and from the Franconia-Springfield Metro station. Although PRTC bus rides are free, you will be required to pay the Metrorail, Metrobus or Fairfax Connector fare. PRTC Buses will leave Metro stations at least every 20 minutes, except for Tysons Corner OmniRide and Linton Hall Metro Direct which will depart every hour, on the hour. Service will begin at noon and the last OmniRide buses will depart the Metrorail stations at 7:30 p.m. Snow Emergency Routing will be implemented if neighborhood streets are deemed unsafe.

*METRO DIRECT buses will operate according to published schedules; however, road conditions may cause delays.

*OMNILINK off-route trips are cancelled for today. OmniLink will remain on ESP all day. OmniLink buses will stop at all signed PRTC bus stops. Buses continue to operate on regular routing as long as conditons permit but snow routing may be activated during the afternoon/evening.

*CROSS COUNTY CONNECTOR buses will operate according to published schedules; however, road conditions may cause delays.

Va. Transportation Officials Urge You to Stay Off Roads Tuesday

News

Transportation officials in Virginia are paying close attention to the weather tonight. By 4 a.m., VDOT says there will be more than 4,000 pieces of equipment out on area highways — salt trucks and plows. 

There is at least  four inches of snow in the forecast Tuesday, and VDOT officials say that after two inches of snow  has fallen residents can begin using the state’s plow map to see the status of snow plowing in their neighborhood.

Here’s more in a press release: 

Pre-treating

Crews pre-treat state roads in Arlington, Fairfax, Loudoun and Prince William counties. On interstates 66, 95, 395, and 495—including bridges and ramps prone to freezing such as the Springfield interchange, I-66 at Route 29 and the Capital Beltway interchange at Route 1—crews use liquid magnesium chloride. Problem spots on other major roads, such as the Fairfax County Parkway and routes 1, 7, 28, 29, 50 and 123, are pre-treated with salt brine.

Driving tips

VDOT reminds drivers to telework or delay travel during winter weather, and:
• Check current weather, road conditions and traffic before leaving
• Slow down and allow extra time to reach your destination
• Be aware of potentially icy areas such as shady spots and bridges

Get more information

• Get details on northern Virginia’s snow removal program.
• Follow @vadotnova on Twitter for northern Virginia news, and @511northernva for real-time traffic updates.
• Use the 511 app or visit www.511virginia.org.
• Report road problems to 1-800-FOR-ROAD (367-7623) or novainfo@vdot.virginia.gov.

Drivers Warned of Delays, Sheriff’s Office Directs Traffic at Garrisonville

News

Update

The delays stemmed from a crash in Prince William County, said Stafford sheriff’s spokesman Bill Kennedy.

A crash was reported after 4 p.m. on Interstate 95 near Quantico which lead to many traffic delays in the area.

6:50 p.m.

NORTH STAFFORD, Va. — Traffic delays lead to a heavy law enforcement presence in North Stafford tonight.

One lane of Garrisonville Road west at U.S. 1 was closed by the Stafford sheriff’s office about 6:15 p.m. Thursday. Law enforcement directed traffic through the intersection as driver faced delays in both the north and south directions of U.S. 1, as well as delays for drivers attempting to make their way out of the Aquia Harbour neighborhood.

The Prince William Scanner Bums Facebook page reported that rescue crews were called to a serious crash on Interstate 95 sometime after 4 p.m., and that a helicopter had to be landed on the highway to take at least one person to a trauma center.

Commuters headed south from Prince William County saw backups for about a mile from Sunnyside Nursery.

While there was no official word from the Stafford sheriff’s office as to why they were directing traffic at the intersection, an email alert from Stafford County Government was sent out about 4:20 p.m. warning drivers of heavy traffic on U.S. 1 south from Prince William into Stafford County, in the Quanitco area.

 

Manassas Woman Struck, Killed by VRE Train

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Update 3 p.m. 

A woman from Manassas was hit and killed this morning by a Virginia Railway Express train.

More in a police press release:

On Wednesday, January 15 shortly after 7 a.m., officers were called to the Virginia Railway Express (VRE) station at 10399 Premier Court in Burke for the report of a pedestrian that had been hit by a train.

Officers were met immediately by VRE officials who directed them to the scene.

Detectives from the Crash Reconstruction Unit were called to the scene and conducted the investigation in cooperation with VRE personnel.

The preliminary investigation determined that a locomotive was traveling southbound enroute from Washington, D.C. to Manassas; it was foggy and dark, visibility was reduced. As the train passed the Burke station and rounded a slight curve, the engineer saw a pedestrian walking across the tracks from left to right. The engineer immediately applied the emergency brake and sounded the horn. The train slowed but hit the pedestrian in the middle of the southbound track.

Danyelle Lynn Anderson, 22, of Manassas, was pronounced dead at the scene.

Update 10 a.m. 

Amtrak reports its Train 20, The Crescent, was delayed for about 30 minutes due to this incident.

Update 9 a.m.

The train that struck a person on the tracks this morning was headed from Washington to Manassas in a reverse commute.

Here’s the very latetest in a statement from VRE:

VRE Train 321 (Southbound) struck an individual near the Burke Centre Station. All passengers on 321 were provided alternate transportation.

(This is a Southbound train doing a reverse commute, so there were only a couple of passengers on board.) Trains 330 and 332 were cancelled.

No trains are stopped with passengers on board.

There’s no word yet from Amtrak on whether that passenger rail system is experiencing delays.

8:30 a.m. 

MANASSAS, Va. — Someone has been struck by a Virginia Railway Express train in Fairfax County and two Manassas line trains are canceled this morning.

Trains 330 and 332 from Broad Run to Washington are not running this morning after someone was struck near the Burke VRE station in Fairfax County. VRE on their website this morning states riders can choose to take Metro instead and that transit system will honor their VRE fare cards.

More as we get it.

VRE on ‘S’ Schedule Monday, Changes to Local Bus Service

News

The Martin Luther King, Jr. holiday will bring some changes to bus service.

Monday, Jan. 20, is a federal holiday and is when the nation will honor civil rights leader Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

The Potomac and Rappahannock Transportation Commission announced the following bus schedule changes for Monday:

In observance of Martin Luther King Jr. Day, PRTC buses will operate as follows on Monday, January 20:

OMNIRIDE COMMUTER BUS AND METRO DIRECT – Modified Holiday schedule – limited service. See designated trips on schedules.

OMNILINK LOCAL BUS AND CROSS COUNTY CONNECTOR – Regular service.

No counter transactions will be processed at the PRTC Transit Center on Monday, January 20.

There will also be changes to Virginia’s only commuter rail service – VRE – on Martin Luther King, Jr. Day. Trains on the system’s Fredericksburg and Manassas lines will operate on an S schedule on Monday.

The date is one of 10 federally observed holidays in which the transit system does not provide service.

*This story earlier incorrectly stated Virginia Railway Express would not provide service on Monday.

Crews Repair Several Pot Holes on I-95 in Stafford

News
[Photo: Mary Davidson]

STAFFORD COUNTY, Va. — It appears several large potholes have formed on Interstate 95 in Stafford County.

Those potholes caught the attention of highway crews and state police that were called to the Falmouth area to repair them and divert traffic, respectively.

More in a press release from the Virginia Department of Transportation:

Several large potholes have developed on I-95 south at Exit 133 (Rt. 17/Falmouth) in Stafford County closing one travel lane on I-95 south and the ramp acceleration lane to Route 17 towards Falmouth. The potholes are located on the bridge over Route 17.

Infrastructure Corporation of America (ICA), VDOT’s interstate maintenance contractor, is on scene to repair the potholes that range from 1 to 5 feet in diameter.

The repairs are expected to take several hours to complete.

 

New Years Holiday Brings Schedule Changes to Local Buses, Trains

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OmniRide and OmniLink buses in Prince William, Manassas, and Manassas Park will have limited service on Tuesday.

More from the operator of the buses, the Potomac and Rappahannock Transportation Commissionv:

TUESDAY, DEC. 31

Regular service. PRTC will provide a few extra midday and early afternoon OmniRide buses to handle anticipated overflow. To avoid possible overcrowding you may consider taking Metrorail or other regional bus and transfer to a Metro Direct bus to complete your commute.

WEDNESDAY, JAN. 1

NO SERVICE

Virginia Railway Express will also have modified service next week leading up to New Years Eve.

More from VRE:

VRE will operate an “S” schedule on December 26th, 27th, 30th and on New Years Eve December 31st. VRE will not operate on January 1st. Regular service will resume on Thursday, January 2, 2014.

In Stafford County, there will be no FRED Bus Service on New Years Day (Wednesday).

 

Scites Killed after Motorcycle Crash

News

DUMFRIES, Va. — A Dumfries riding a motorcycle crashed and died from his injuries.

More in a police report:

Crash – Fatality – On December 23rd at 11:36AM, investigators from the Crash Investigation Unit responded to the 17800 block of Mine Rd in Dumfries (22026) to investigate a motorcycle crash.

The investigation revealed that the operator of a 2002 Yamaha 250 motorcycle was riding on an open field in the above area when he lost control and struck guide wires attached to a utility pole. No other vehicles or persons were involved. The operator returned to his residence where he died from apparent internal injuries later in the day.

Identified:

The operator of the 2002 Yamaha 250 motorcycle was identified as Samuel James SCITES, 48, of Dumfries

Telegraph Bridge Reopening Planned, Will Reconnect Quantico with U.S. 1

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Picture 1 of 4

QUANTICO, Va. — A new bridge that will connect the west side of Quantico Marine Corps Base with U.S. 1 is nearly complete.

The reconstructed bridge carries traffic via Telegraph Road over Interstate 95 onto a portion of the base where the Naval Criminal Investigative Service is located, as well as the Air Force Office of Special Investigations.

Work to rebuild the bridge began this past spring.

More in a press release:

The Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) announced that the new Telegraph Road Bridge, which crosses over I-95, near Marine Core Base Quantico (MCBQ) is in its final stage of construction. Crews are completing finishing work on the new bridge deck, as well as the fencing.

The bridge will remain closed to traffic until early February 2014 to accommodate a MCBQ construction project at the nearby Russell Knox Building. MCBQ will use the Telegraph Road corridor (specifically areas west of the bridge on Quantico property) for staging and the safe delivery of concrete beams to the construction site at the Russell Knox Building. Truck deliveries may occur 24 hours a day using Telegraph Road, Tallmadge Road and Russell Road, but will not be crossing the bridge.

Drivers will continue to follow current detour signs to U.S. Route 1 or Russell Road in order to access I-95 or Telegraph Road. Drivers should continue to expect an additional five to eight minute delay during peak travel times.

Construction of the new Telegraph Road Bridge began last April, at which time the old bridge was closed and demolished. The bridge spans over I-95 and the future new Express Lanes.

Lane Closures Lifted, HOV Changes for Christmas

News
Interstate 95 south at Dumfries [Photo: Uriah Kiser/Potomac Local News]

Starting a noon today, all regularly scheduled highway construction lane closures were lifted for Christmas. This will allow for easier travel on the state’s highways and Interstates, according to the Virginia Department of Transportation.

The lane closures will resume Thursday.

There are also changes to the HOV lanes between Dumfries and the Pentagon.

More in a press release:

NORTHERN VIRGINIA HIGH OCCUPANCY VEHICLE SCHEDULE:

High Occupancy Vehicle (HOV) restrictions on interstates 66, 95 and 395 will be affected by the year-end holidays.

Christmas

Tuesday, Dec. 24: Normal HOV restrictions are in effect. Interstate 95/395 reversible lanes will remain southbound Christmas Eve night and Christmas Day.

Wednesday, Dec. 25: HOV restrictions on I-95, I-395 and Interstate 66 are lifted. I-95/395 reversible lanes will remain southbound until midnight Christmas Day and switch to northbound by 2 a.m. Thursday, Dec. 26.

Thursday, Dec. 26: Normal HOV restrictions are in effect.

New Year’s Tuesday, Dec. 31: Normal HOV restrictions are in effect. I-95/395 reversible lanes will remain southbound New Year’s Eve night and New Year’s Day.

Wednesday, Jan. 1, 2014: HOV restrictions on I-95, I-395 and I-66 are lifted. I-95/395 reversible lanes will remain southbound until midnight New Year’s Day and switch to northbound by 2 a.m. Thursday, Jan. 2, 2014.

Thursday, Jan. 2, 2014: Normal HOV restrictions are in effect.

I-95 Express Lanes construction: VDOT will restrict lane closures on I-95 in the Express Lanes work zone from 5 a.m. Tuesday, Dec. 24, until 8 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 26, and again from 5 a.m. Tuesday, Dec. 31, until 8 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 2, 2014.

Additionally, there will be no daytime lane closures in the 29-mile work zone during the weekends of Dec. 21-22, Dec. 28-29 and Jan. 4-5, 2014. All overnight lane closures must be reopened by 7 a.m. on these weekends in the general purpose lanes.

 

Limited Bus, Train Service for Holidays

News
Many of the OmniRide local bus routes that serve eastern Prince William County stop at the PRTC Transit Center in Woodbridge.

There will be limited bus service in Prince William, Manassas, and Manassas Park today and no service tomorrow, Christmas.

More in a press notice from the Potomac and Rappahannock Transportation Commission that operates OmniRide and OmniLink buses:

TUESDAY, DEC. 24

• OmniRide Commuter Bus and Metro Direct – Modified Holiday schedule-limited service. See designated trips on schedules. PRTC will provide a few extra midday and early afternoon OmniRide buses to handle anticipated overflow. To avoid possible overcrowding you may consider taking Metrorail or other regional bus and transfer to a Metro Direct bus to complete your commute.

• OmniLink Local Bus and Cross County Connector – Regular Service

NOTE: The PRTC Transit Center will be closed on Tuesday, December 24.

Virginia Railway Express trains will offer regular service today, but no service will be offered on Christmas Day.

Additionally, all trains will operate on an “S” schedule Dec. 28 through Dec. 30. Only trains with S marked on the schedule will operate. 

 

Students Injured in School Bus vs. Car Crash

News
(Photo: Prince William County Public Schools)

HAYMARKET, Va. — Some Alvey Elementary School students suffered minor injuries Thursday morning after riding on a school bus that collided with a car this morning.

More in a statement from Prince William County Public Schools:

Emergency crews responded to a minor accident after Alvey Bus #355 was hit by a car this morning. Some students complained of minor injuries, and two were transported to the hospital to be checked out. Injuries do not appear serious. Parents of all students aboard are being contacted directly.

A second bus was transporting the students to school.

Alvey Elementary School is located near Haymarket.

Icy Spots on Area Road This Morning

News

STAFFORD COUNTY, Va. — Road crews are working this morning to clear icy spots on area roads.

More in a press release from VDOT:

Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) crews are patrolling Interstate 95 this morning in the Fredericksburg District, along with primary and secondary roads in Caroline, Spotsylvania and Stafford counties, to apply abrasives for isolated areas of ice. Motorists should proceed with caution as they drive this morning, especially on low-volume roads, bridges, interstate ramps and overpasses. Due to lower surface temperatures, or less traffic, these areas are more likely to develop ice.

 

Car on Embankment, Portion of Sudley Manor Drive Closed

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MANASSAS, Va. — A car drove up an embankment at the Bull Run Shopping Center near Manassas.

Police, as well as fire and rescue crews were called to the scene near the intersection of Sudley Manor Drive and Ashton Avenue about 12:30 p.m.

A portion of Sudley Manor Drive in the direction of Ashton Avenue was closed following the crash.

It’s unclear at this time if there were any serious injuries.

See something we’re not reporting? Snap a photo and send it to news@potomaclocal.com.

No Foul Play in Death of Driver Found Behind Wheel

News

WOODBRIDGE, Va. — It appears no foul play was involved in the death of a man found inside a car that ran off the Blackburn Road in Woodbridge.

Here’s the latest in an unedited police report:

Death Investigation – On December 12th, following an autopsy, investigators have reclassified this incident as a death investigation. The investigation revealed that the victim was involved in a crash in which his vehicle left the roadway however an autopsy performed this morning revealed no signs of trauma from the crash or foul play. Detectives have confirmed the identity of the victim as the man reported missing from Seat Pleasant, MD on Monday. The investigation continues as investigators await toxicology results from the Medical Examiner’s Office.

Identified:

The victim has been identified as Frankie Neal STEWART, 57, of Seat Pleasant, MD

 

Car Hits Embankment, Driver Killed

News

WOODBRIDGE, Va. – The driver of a Chrysler 200 was killed Wednesday morning when his car ran off the road in Woodbridge.

More in a police report:

Crash Fatality – On December 11th at 7:17AM, police responded to the area of Jefferson Davis Hwy and Blackburn Rd for a crash. The investigation revealed that the driver, and only occupant of a 2013 Chrysler 200, was traveling southbound on Jefferson Davis Hwy in the above area when his vehicle left the roadway and crashed into the embankment.

The driver of the vehicle was pronounced [dead] at the scene. The driver’s identity will be released when positively identified by the Medical Examiner’s Office. Investigation continues.

Identified:

The driver of the 2013 Chrysler 200 was identified as an adult male

 

Lanes Closing Tonight for Sign Crews

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DALE CITY, Va. — Road crews along Interstate 95 in Prince William County will be working on highway signs. That means they’ll have close down some lanes to get the job done tonight.

Where they’ll be working:

Wednesday, Dec. 11 to Thursday, Dec. 12, drivers can expect overnight lane closures on northbound Interstate 95, eastbound Route 29 and Route 50. Crews will begin setting several full-span overhead sign structures and cantilever sign structures. Lane closures are as follows:

10 p.m. – 5:30 a.m.:

Northbound I-95 will close two of three lanes from Dale City to Cardinal Drive.

Crews will also be working in two areas of Fairfax County:

8 p.m. – 5:30 a.m.:

Eastbound Route 50 will close one of four lanes from the ramp to northbound I-495 to Fairview Park Drive.

10 p.m. – 5:30 a.m.:

Eastbound Route 29 will close two of four lanes from Summit Drive to the Fairfax County Parkway.

VRE Riders Can Bring Toys for Tots on Train Wednesday

News
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Manassas, Woodbridge train stations to also serve as drop off sites Dec. 14

WOODBRIDGE, Va. — Riders who use Virginia Railway Express are urged to bring a new unwrapped toy with them tomorrow to the train station.

The commuter railroad in its annual “Toys for Tots” drive will collect those toys for needy children.

More in a press release:

Tomorrow, Wednesday, December 11th, we will hold our annual on board “Toys for Tots” drive. On that day only, all riders are invited to bring a new unwrapped toy with them on the train (morning commute only), and leave it on their seat as they detrain. VRE “elves” will collect the toys at the end of each run. Conductors will also collect checks and cash on that day for those of you who would prefer to let someone else do the shopping. (Checks should be made payable to: Toys for Tots).

Once toys, cash and checks are collected, the U.S. Marine Corps will collect all donations.

If you know you won’t be riding VRE on December 11th, feel free to drop off a toy during our Santa Train event scheduled for Saturday, December 14th.

Participating stations include: Fredericksburg, Woodbridge, Burke Centre, and Manassas.

We have participated in the Toys for Tots program for 17 years now and it’s been incredibly gratifying to know that our riders have helped so many families share in the fun tradition of opening new gifts during the holiday season.

 

Free Rides on Saturday Prince William Metro Direct Bus Extended into Spring

News
OmniRide bus operator Phill Robinson is one of many PRTC drivers who ferry riders to and from their destinations.

WOODBRIDGE, Va. — Here’s some good news for those who take the bus from Woodbridge to the Springfield Metro station on Saturdays – the service will be extended, and it still won’t cost you a dime out of pocket.

The Prince William Metro Direct Bus that runs from Woodbridge to the Franconia-Springfield Metro station on Saturdays will continue providing free service on Saturdays only through May 17, 2014.

Bus fares are covered by the state as part of the Virginia Megaprojects program overseeing the construction of express toll lanes on Interstate 95.

Beginning in September, the Metro Direct bus, for the first time, provided service on Saturday – something bus riders in Prince William County had long requested. During its three-month trial period, the service has caught on.

“When Saturday Prince William Metro Direct service started in September, we were expecting that the service would carry about 300 riders per day at the three month mark. Happily, we’ve averaged about 400 riders per day, and the high ridership mark was set on Nov. 16 with 471 passengers,” said Potomac and Rappahannock Transportation Commission spokeswoman Christine Rodrigo.

The Saturday Metro Direct bus starts its day at 7:35 a.m. at the PRTC Transit Center in Woodbridge, then heading down Opitz Boulevard and then onto U.S. 1 north before merging onto Interstate 95. Its return trip from the Metro station stops at Potomac Mills Mall.

The last trip from the Transit Center leaves at 8:55 p.m., and the last trip from the Metro station is 9:25 p.m.

During the week, it costs $3.60 for a regular one-way fare, $2.90 for SmarTrip users, to ride Metro Direct.

While the Prince William Metro Direct is the only Metro Direct service to run on weekends, it is one of two PRTC Metro Direct buses that travel between Prince William and Manassas and Metro stations near the Capital Beltway. The Manassas Metro Direct ferries passengers from Manassas and western Prince William County to and from the West Falls Church Metro station.

OmniLink Bus will miss 4 Dumfries Stops Today

News
New OmniLink buses that serve Prince William County, Manassas, and Manassas Park. The buses have a new look more aligned with the overall color scheme for the Potomac and Rappahannock Transportation Commission. [Submitted photo]

DUMFRIES, Va. — OmniLink buses in Dumfries today will miss some stops after a tree fell onto Fuller Heights Road.

According to the Potomac and Rappahannock Transportation Commission, the following stops will be missed:

Missed stops:

–Fuller Heights before Kerill Rd. (northbound and southbound trips)

–Fuller Heights after Perry St. (Quantico Court Apartments)

–The Lofts at Little Creek

–Fuller Heights at Bethlehem Church Rd.

Alternate stop:

–Fuller Heights near Old Triangle Rd (7-11)

 

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