Tuesday’s winter storm took everyone in our region by surprise. What was forecasted as less than one inch quickly turned into five plus inches. Matt Roth, the BRMCA Roads POC, worked with the county rep to mobilize their snow contractor, who began work around 11am. The county has asked that we adhere to the VDOT policy of waiting to plow until the snow level reaches four inches. However, the county is lenient with this policy as the steep roads in our community translate to one inch being as treacherous as much deeper snow on level roads. Yesterday, the county contractor started plowing when the snow was between two to three inches.
The county allocated eight hours to the contractor, which gave his crew enough time to make one complete pass and spread gravel in a few areas. Despite the plowing, their remains a layer of ice on many of our roads. Unlike paved roads, the county contractor cannot press the surface as we would risk destroying the chipcoated surface. Unfortunately, this results in a thin layer of compacted snow and ice. We worked with the county representative and county contractor late into the night, recommending immediate application of gravel and salt on all roads since the temperature is not supposed to climb above freezing until Friday. The county allotted the contractor an additional four hours to begin Tuesday at 4am. The contractor should have enough time to gravel and salt the worst (steepest, curviest, shadiest, etc) areas. Our Roads POC will monitor the conditions and work with the county rep to request additional contractor time if necessary. I recommend that, as our neighbors did along Nelson Road, we take advantage of the gravel barrels to spread as much gravel as is needed to aid with traction.
Please send us your feedback and recommendations on how we, and the county, can improve in preparation for the next storm. We will respond to all emails and phone calls, and will pass your comments along to the county representative.
The correct phone number to report road related issues is: (703) 753-3024 and leave a message or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Josh Weinstein, President BRMCA