Thousands of crashes reported, many injured in storm’s path

A bobcat piles up snow in front of the U.S. Capitol, as the snow continues to fall, Friday, Jan. 22, 2016, in Washington. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — Virginia State Police say troopers were extremely busy on Friday. As we wake up to another day of snow and frigid temperatures, police are asking drivers to avoid travel on Virginia highways.

“Winds have now picked up causing snow to drift and pile up across interstates and primary routes, which make driving even more dangerous,” police said in an update sent out Saturday morning.

As of 7 a.m. Saturday, Virginia State Police are on the scene of 17 crashes and 25 disabled vehicles.

The most common emergency calls for Virginia troopers overnight were for stuck, disabled vehicles.

From midnight Saturday (Jan. 23) through 6 a.m. Saturday, VSP troopers have responded to 145 traffic crashes and 229 disabled vehicles statewide. The majority of those crashes and disabled vehicles have occurred in Northern Virginia (62 crashes/71 disabled vehicles).

On Friday, Virginia State Police responded to a total 1,032 traffic crashes and another 879 disabled vehicles across the Commonwealth. State police dispatch centers fielded a total of 3,471 total calls for service during that same time period.

The Hampton Roads region experienced the most traffic crashes Friday with state trooper responding to 339 crashes in the Chesapeake division. There was one confirmed fatal crash that occurred Friday afternoon in the City of Chesapeake. That accident remains the only reported storm-related traffic death at this time.

The Metro-Richmond and Northern Virginia regions had the most disabled and stuck vehicles. State Police Richmond Division responded to 298 disabled vehicles. VSP Fairfax Division responded to 181 disabled vehicles.

Virginia Trooper M.D. Jester is currently being treated at VCU Medical Center in Richmond for minor injuries after his vehicle was struck on Interstate 64 at the 212 mile marker in New Kent County.

The trooper was stopped out with a disabled vehicle in the westbound lanes when another vehicle ran into the back of the patrol car. The patrol car’s lights were activated at the time of the crash, which occurred at 7:36 p.m. Friday.

State police and VDOT are still stressing to Virginians not to travel unless absolutely necessary.

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