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UPDATED: After 11 Hours, Lawyers Road Reopens

Downed wires keep traffic from passing between Galloping Way and Whippoorwill Road

UPDATE 1:17 a.m. Lawyers Road is now open, according to a Virginia Department of Transportation traffic map. 

Fairfax County Police were called off the scene about two hours earlier, a dispatcher said around 1 a.m., though barricades remained in place, blocking traffic.

The original closure prevented drivers from traveling on Lawyers Road between Galloping Way and Whippoorsville Road; VDOT closed the road up to Hunter Mill Road to complete its repairs, according to its traffic map.The closure lasted about 11 hours in total.

Commuters, through email and Twitter, told Patch they were frustrated no signs appeared to let drivers know about the issue, especially as minutes turned into hours and the backup stretched several miles to the Dulles Toll Road, they said.

A spokesman from Dominion Power said no customers were affected because of the incident.

Patch will update this story as more information becomes available

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UPDATE 8:46 p.m.: A Fairfax County dispatcher says the road remains closed.

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UPDATE 7:10 p.m.: Hunter Mill Road is backed up from its intersection with Lawyers Road until the Dulles Toll Road, commuters are reporting.

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Downed power and telephone wires has shut down part of Lawyers Road south of Hunter Mill Road on Thursday night.

The road is closed between Galloping Way and Whippoorwill Road.

A report of the wires came in around 2 p.m., at which point Fairfax County police responded to the scene, a dispatcher said.

The department closed the road at that time, and it remains closed as officers await assistance from Fairfax County fire, Dominion Power and telephone utility workers.

The spokesman said road would likely remain closed until power lines could be cut, thereby clearing the roadway, and serviced.

"They're doing what they can out there," the dispatcher said.

Twitter users told Vienna Patch around 6 p.m. there were backups, but the traffic issues hadn't become too bad, yet.

User brian_c_wilson said he turned around and took Vale Road to Hunter Mill Road instead. Vale was also experiencing some backups he said; the delay added about 15 minutes to his trip.

According to Dominion Power's outage map, there are no power outages at this time.

Patch will update this story as more information becomes available.

Erica R. Hendry May 04, 2012 at 02:45 AM
Bert, Shortly after we put this up we learned traffic had quickly backed up to Dulles Toll Road (and put in an update). I've gotten Tweets and emails from other readers asking about signs -- we'll try to have an answer for you tonight or tomorrow. Thanks for reading and sharing! Erica
Elizamore May 04, 2012 at 01:04 PM
How come there were no Fairfax County police directing traffic at Hunter Mill/Lawyers during the height of rush hour???!! It's inexcusable that this wasn't handled better...and commuters were unknowingly trapped in a jam that toolk over 1.5 hours to get through. When I finally got through the Hunter MIll/Lawyers intersection at 6:30 pm, there wasn't a police officer to be seen...and traffic at that time was indeed backed up to the toll road. It's unfathomable that a major artery during rush hour would be closed with no police to support the traffice flow, or lack thereof!!!! What a debac
Elizamore May 04, 2012 at 01:09 PM
Erica, please ask the police why no officers were stationed at this mess during rush hour!
Erica R. Hendry May 04, 2012 at 01:12 PM
Hi Elizamore -- we're working on getting more information from the police and other agencies involved. Stay tuned. Thanks for reading, Erica
paulbain July 10, 2012 at 12:01 AM
I would like to remind everyone that there was a similar traffic-tie-up at the intersection of Lawyer's road and Hunter Mill road a few months ago (last fall, IIRC). During that congestion, Fairfax county was also remiss, failing to deploy enough police to re-route and detour the traffic. Folks, I see a pattern here. Fairfax County government simply is not using our tax dollars wisely. It is time to throw the politicians out of office and elect some patriots who know what they are doing. -- Paul D. Bain paulbain@pobox.com

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