Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Use Caution on Loudoun County Roadways Tomorrow -- High Wind Warning in Effect

According to Loudoun County Weather, the National Weather Service has issued a High Wind Warning beginning at 2 a.m. tomorrow, Thursday, Feb. 12, through midnight tomorrow night.

A high wind warning means a hazardous high wind event is expected or occurring. Sustained wind speeds of at least 40 mph or gusts of 58 mph or more can lead to property damage.

It can be dangerous to drive in high winds as the wind affects vehicle control and also can surprise a driver under certain circumstances:
  • During lane changes
  • When passing or being passed by other vehicles such as large trucks
  • When crossing elevated bridges
  • When entering and leaving wind-protected areas such as building, forests, overpasses
  • While towing a trailer

If you are out driving, the National Weather Service encourages motorists to:

  • Keep both hands on the wheel and slow down.
  • Watch for objects blowing across the roadway and into your path.
  • Keep a safe distance from cars in adjacent lanes as strong gusts could push a car outside its lane of travel.
  • Take extra care in a high-profile vehicle such as a truck, van, SUV, or when towing a trailer, as these are more prone to be pushed or even flipped by high wind gusts.
  • If winds are severe enough to prevent safe driving, get onto the shoulder of the road and stop, making sure you are away from trees or other tall objects that could fall onto your vehicle. Stay in the car and turn on the hazard lights until the wind subsides.

Please use extra caution if out and about on Loudoun County's roadways tomorrow. Let's all plan to arrive safely!

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