Snow, slick roads follow coldest day of the year

Snow lines sidewalks in the District. (WTOP/Dave Dildine)
Snow lines sidewalks in the District. (WTOP/Dave Dildine)

Snow checkers a sidewalk in D.C. Residents are required to shovel. (WTOP/Dave Dildine)
Snow checkers a sidewalk in D.C. Residents are required to shovel. (WTOP/Dave Dildine)

A power brusher pushes away snow Saturday morning. (WTOP/Dave Dildine)
A power brusher pushes away snow Saturday morning. (WTOP/Dave Dildine)

Roads in Bethesda have a light coating of snow Saturday morning. (WTOP/Lisa Weiner)
Roads in Bethesda have a light coating of snow Saturday morning. (WTOP/Lisa Weiner)

Roads in Bethesda have a light coating of snow Saturday morning. (WTOP/Lisa Weiner)
Roads in Bethesda have a light coating of snow Saturday morning. (WTOP/Lisa Weiner)

A worker spreads salt on the sidewalk outside a Wheaton apartment building. (WTOP/Ian Crawford)
A worker spreads salt on the sidewalk outside a Wheaton apartment building. (WTOP/Ian Crawford)

A snow plow works on the streets of Rockville, Maryland, on Saturday, Dec. 30, 2017. (WTOP/John Aaron)
A snow plow works on the streets of Rockville, Maryland, on Saturday, Dec. 30, 2017. (WTOP/John Aaron)

Side streets on Rockville Pike have snow coverage but the main road appears cleared of accumulation. (WTOP/John Aaron)
Side streets on Rockville Pike have snow coverage but the main road appears cleared of accumulation. (WTOP/John Aaron)

Snow falls in Northwest D.C. on Saturday, Dec. 30, 2017, following one of the the coldest days of year. (WTOP/Abigail Constantino)
Snow falls in Northwest D.C. on Saturday, Dec. 30, 2017, following one of the the coldest days of year. (WTOP/Abigail Constantino)

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Snow lines sidewalks in the District. (WTOP/Dave Dildine)
Snow checkers a sidewalk in D.C. Residents are required to shovel. (WTOP/Dave Dildine)
A power brusher pushes away snow Saturday morning. (WTOP/Dave Dildine)
Roads in Bethesda have a light coating of snow Saturday morning. (WTOP/Lisa Weiner)
Roads in Bethesda have a light coating of snow Saturday morning. (WTOP/Lisa Weiner)
A worker spreads salt on the sidewalk outside a Wheaton apartment building. (WTOP/Ian Crawford)
A snow plow works on the streets of Rockville, Maryland, on Saturday, Dec. 30, 2017. (WTOP/John Aaron)
Side streets on Rockville Pike have snow coverage but the main road appears cleared of accumulation. (WTOP/John Aaron)
Snow falls in Northwest D.C. on Saturday, Dec. 30, 2017, following one of the the coldest days of year. (WTOP/Abigail Constantino)

WASHINGTON — It’s been a brutally cold week in the D.C. area and the region experienced some light snow overnight that is making roads slippery.

“So temperatures are very cold, and this is important for road conditions because, of course, cold roads mean the snow will stick immediately, and it has in fact been doing that,” National Weather Service meteorologist Ray Martin told WTOP. “Most untreated surfaces are snow-covered this morning.”

The precipitation was light, with totals under an inch Saturday morning, Martin said.

However, he warned, temperatures are making road conditions tricky.

“Almost all the roads I was on were snow covered,” WTOP’s Dmitri Soltis reported early Saturday. “It was difficult to tell where one lane ends and another one begins. … So you definitely want to slow way down.”

Friday evening saw a drop in temperature with lows in the low to mid-20s, making way for the light snow that started to fall after midnight.

Storm Team 4 Meteorologist Mike Stinneford said the snow wrapped up by early Saturday morning. Saturday’s forecast calls for highs in the low 30s and bitterly cold air making its way into the region.

Stinneford said the accumulation made roads, bridges, overpasses and exit ramps slippery.


Get the latest closings and delays information in WTOP’s Closings & Delays page.


Sunday’s forecast of extreme cold temperatures, with lows in the low to mid-20s and wind chills close to zero, has prompted Fredericksburg, Virginia, officials to cancel its New Year’s Eve Family Fun Night celebration at the Riverfront Park Sunday. Details on the event’s Facebook page state that the weather will affect “many of the planned activities … including the bands, children’s activities and food vendors.”

The cold weather will continue for at least seven days, said Stinneford.


Get the latest weather forecast from WTOP’s Weather Center.


In response to the cold temperatures, D.C. has activated its Cold Emergency Plan through Tuesday, Jan. 2, 2018.

In preparation for the snow, D.C. pre-treated roads at 7 p.m. Friday. The Snow Team deployed more than 200 trucks to treat major roads and routes throughout D.C.

Property owners are required to remove snow from sidewalks within the first eight hours of daylight after a snowfall. To reduce the possibility slips and falls due to icing, the District’s Snow Team encourages residents to use rock salt or non-clumping kitty litter on sidewalks and around their property.


Get the latest traffic report from WTOP’s Traffic Center.


Sunday: Mostly sunny, but blustery and cold
Highs: Low to mid-20s.

Monday: Mostly sunny and cold
Highs: Mid-20s.

WTOP’s William Vitka contributed to this report.


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