January 20 - 22 Snow Event Information

UPDATE - Suffolk Public Works Response to Winter Weather Event - 4:00 p.m. - 1/22/22

SUFFOLK, Virginia (January 22, 2022) Suffolk Public Works crews continue to work to address snow and ice on roadways in the City of Suffolk. At this point, most designated primary roadways have been cleared and treated and staff have moved to secondary roads. Public Works currently has 22 trucks in operation and have used 189 tons of abrasive across the City. Crews will continue to work 24 hours a day in 12 hour shifts for the foreseeable future. 

Staff would like to remind residents of possible refreezing on roadways tonight into Sunday morning due to forecasted frigid overnight temperatures. The National Weather Service in Wakefield is calling for a low of 10 degrees tonight in the City of Suffolk. Motorists are asked to stay off the roads and avoid all nonessential travel. Bridges and overpasses can be particularly troublesome as they are likely to freeze before roads. If you do have to travel, stay back and avoid passing snow plows as snow or abrasives can come from the plow while it is in operation. Also drivers should not get directly in front of a snow plow as the heavy machinery is not able to stop quickly. 

An interactive map of the City’s priority routes for public paved roadways within the City can be viewed online: www.suffolkva.us/winterprep. Please note that removal timeframes and priority are subject to change with weather conditions.

To report roadway issues, citizens can contact Public Works at 757-514-7600.

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SUFFOLK CITY FACILITIES TO OPEN AS SCHEDULED ON SUNDAY JANUARY 23

SUFFOLK, Virginia (January 22, 2022) City of Suffolk facilities will be open for regular hours on Sunday, January 23, 2022. Facilities with regular Sunday operating hours include the Suffolk Visitor Center, Suffolk Seaboard Station Railroad Museum, Suffolk Executive Airport, and the Suffolk Art Gallery.

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UPDATE - Suffolk Public Works Response to Winter Weather Event - 8:45 a.m. - 1/22/22

SUFFOLK, Virginia (January 22, 2022) Suffolk Public Works personnel have been working throughout the night on the City’s primary roads applying materials and plowing. The City’s major roads are passable and the arterials are starting to show pavement with some roads still being covered with snow. Conditions are expected to improve with daytime temps and traffic along with continued plowing and treatment by Public Works staff. At present, 22 plows are up and running to address roadway conditions. Operations are in effect 24 hours a day with 12 hour shifts.

The National Weather Service is calling for temperatures to remain at or below to freezing today, Saturday, January 22nd. Tonight’s temperatures will be down in the teens and could result in refreezing. 

Staff are advising residents to avoid travel unless absolutely necessary. If you must travel, please drive cautiously and slowly, removing all snow and ice from the whole vehicle before driving and leave plenty of room between you and other vehicles on the road. Drivers should also stay back and avoid passing snow plows as snow or abrasive can come from the plow while operating.

An interactive map of the City’s priority routes for public paved roadways within the City can be viewed online: https://suffolkva.maps.arcgis.com/apps/PublicInformation/index.html?appid=159217ab90c34c8da06e5a9207fea2af. Please note that removal timeframes and priority are subject to change with weather conditions.

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SUFFOLK TRANSIT SERVICE SUSPENDED FOR SATURDAY, JANUARY 22

SUFFOLK, Virginia (January 22, 2022)  Due to roadway conditions and for the safety of passengers and staff, Suffolk Public Works advises that Suffolk Transit service has been suspended for today, Saturday, January 22, 2022.

Conditions will be evaluated and an update regarding service for Monday, January 24th will be made by Sunday evening, January 23rd

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SUFFOLK PUBLIC WORKS CREWS PREPARING FOR WINTER STORM

SUFFOLK, Virginia (January 21, 2022) Suffolk Department of Public Works crews have been staffed 24 hours a day on 12 hour shifts since yesterday morning, Thursday, January 20, 2022, preparing for the winter weather our area is expecting into the weekend.

Crews have been patrolling roadways, monitoring weather conditions and responding to any issues as they arise. Today, Friday, January 21st, crews began pretreating arterial roads with brine solution prior to the second round of snow and will treat hot spots on roadways as time permits. Those primary roadways include Route 58, Route 460, Route 13/32, College Drive, Route 10 and Route 17.

As previously advised, staff are encouraging residents to limit travel ahead of the forecasted winter weather’s arrival and especially during the onset of hazardous driving conditions. A City produced public service announcement related to winter driving safety tips can be viewed at this link: https://youtu.be/b_EZ7FTsOeE

The Public Works Roadway Division is responsible for clearing snow and ice from Suffolk public streets. The primary purpose of snow removal is to clear snow for emergency vehicles, hospital access, and service vehicles such as school buses, public transit buses and refuse trucks. With safety and emergency accessibility being the primary concerns, the first priority is given to all primary or main roadways, followed by secondary arterials and connectors. Neighborhood streets are cleared last and, due to the size of the equipment, configuration of neighborhood streets and the presence of cars parked on the street, may not be accessible by City plows. An interactive map of the City’s priority routes for public paved roadways within the City can be viewed online: https://suffolkva.maps.arcgis.com/apps/PublicInformation/index.html?appid=159217ab90c34c8da06e5a9207fea2af. Please note that removal timeframes and priority are subject to change with weather conditions. 

When it becomes necessary to operate snowplows, residents can assist in the efficiency of snow removal by doing the following:

--Avoid travel unless absolutely necessary; if you must travel, please drive cautiously and slowly, removing all snow and ice from the whole vehicle before driving

--Leave plenty of room between you and other vehicles

--Stay back and avoid passing snow plows; snow or abrasive can come from the plow while operating

--Avoid parking on streets when snow or ice is predicted

--Shovel sidewalks as soon as possible after storm; however, avoid shoveling snow from driveways or sidewalks into the roadway

--Clear snow around fire hydrants; firefighters will be able to respond more quickly in the event of an emergency

To report roadway issues, citizens can contact Public Works at 757-514-7600.

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SUFFOLK CITY FACILITIES TO REMAIN CLOSED ON SATURDAY JANUARY 22

SUFFOLK, Virginia (January 21, 2022)  City of Suffolk facilities will remain closed on Saturday, January 22, 2022, due to the impact of winter weather expected Friday, January 21st into Saturday, January 22nd. City facilities are set to close at 12 p.m. (noon) today, Friday, January 21st

Suffolk Transit will continue to operate on Saturday, January 22nd. However operations could change based on the safety of road conditions, at which time, a further update would be released.

As for Sunday, January 23rd, a decision on the operation of the Suffolk Airport, Suffolk Visitor Center, Suffolk Seaboard Station Railroad Museum, and Suffolk Art Gallery will be made on Saturday, January 22nd

Staff continue to encourage motorists to avoid driving as much as possible and limit travel to necessary trips. A City produced public service announcement related to winter driving safety tips can be viewed at this link: https://youtu.be/b_EZ7FTsOeE. To report roadway issues, citizens can contact Public Works at 757-514-7600.

For afterhours requests for emergency Public Utilities Services, call 757-514-7000 (broken water pipes, etc.).

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SUFFOLK CITY OFFICES TO CLOSE AT NOON ON FRIDAY JANUARY 21

SUFFOLK, Virginia (January 20, 2022)  City of Suffolk facilities will close at 12 p.m. (noon) on Friday, January 21, 2022 due to the potential impact of winter weather from the pending snow storm.

Refuse and recycling collections will run as normally scheduled on Friday, January 21, 2022. Suffolk Transit will also operate on a regular schedule on Friday, January 21, 2022.  Suffolk Transit operations for Saturday, January 22, 2022 will be determined by the safety of roadway conditions and will be announced as soon as practicable.

Public Works crews started 24 hour staffing with 12 hour shifts this morning, Thursday, January 20th, which will run through the duration of this weather event. Staff encourage motorists to avoid driving as much as possible and limit travel to necessary trips. To report roadway issues, citizens can contact Public Works at 757-514-7600.

For afterhours requests for emergency Public Utilities Services, call 757-514-7000 (broken water pipes, etc.).

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CITY OF SUFFOLK PREPARES FOR THREAT OF SEVERE WINTER WEATHER

SUFFOLK, VA (January 19, 2022) The National Weather Service has issued a Hazardous Weather Outlook for the City of Suffolk and surrounding areas related to the threat of possible snow and severe winter weather conditions starting tomorrow, Thursday, January 20, 2022 continuing into the weekend. Forecasters are calling for rain Thursday which is expected to change to snow Thursday afternoon and evening following the passage of an Arctic cold front. A second round of winter precipitation is expected late Friday into Saturday morning. 

The City’s Office of Emergency Management is coordinating with the Virginia Department of Emergency Management and National Weather Service to monitor weather forecasts. City staff are preparing ahead of potential impacts to roadways and City services. Present plans call for Public Works Operations to begin 24 hour staffing on Thursday and remaining in effect throughout the weekend to address any roadway issues including plowing which will begin on designated primary roads when required. Operations will consist of 12 hour shifts with each shift will having 20 to 24 trucks running with plows and spreaders.

The Roadway Division of Public Works is responsible for clearing snow and ice from Suffolk public streets. The primary purpose of snow removal is to clear snow for emergency vehicles, hospital access, and service vehicles such as school buses, public transit buses and refuse trucks.

With safety and emergency accessibility being the primary concerns, the first priority is given to all primary or main roadways, followed by secondary arterials and connectors. Neighborhood streets are cleared last and, due to the size of the equipment, configuration of neighborhood streets and the presence of cars parked on the street, may not be accessible by City plows. An interactive map of the City’s priority routes for public paved roadways within the City can be viewed online: https://suffolkva.maps.arcgis.com/apps/PublicInformation/index.html?appid=159217ab90c34c8da06e5a9207fea2af. Please note that removal timeframes and priority are subject to change with weather conditions. 

City crews assess each snow/ice event for the best possible treatment plan. Depending upon conditions, roadways may be pre-treated in the hours before the onset of the winter event. This pretreatment may be a wet salt solution (brine) or a dry mixture of sand and salt (abrasive). Pretreatment can be used to help reduce icy conditions but may not be the only required treatment.

When it becomes necessary to operate snowplows, residents can assist in the efficiency of snow removal by doing the following:

--Avoid travel unless absolutely necessary; if you must travel, please drive cautiously and slowly, removing all snow and ice from the whole vehicle before driving

--Leave plenty of room between you and other vehicles

--Stay back and avoid passing snow plows; snow or abrasive can come from the plow while operating

--Avoid parking on streets when snow or ice is predicted

--Shovel sidewalks as soon as possible after storm; however, avoid shoveling snow from driveways or sidewalks into the roadway

--Clear snow around fire hydrants; firefighters will be able to respond more quickly in the event of an emergency