Winter storm warning in effect for Suffolk

Published 7:04 am Thursday, February 20, 2020

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A winter storm warning will be in effect for Suffolk and all of south Hampton Roads beginning at 3 p.m. Thursday and continuing through 7 a.m. Friday as 3 to 6 inches of snow is expected, with locally higher amounts possible.

Mike Montefusco, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service’s Wakefield office, said the storm is expected to begin as rain Thursday afternoon, changing to a rain/snow mix mid-to-late afternoon, around 4 to 5 p.m., before shifting to light snow in the early evening hours, and heavier snow after 8 p.m. into the early overnight hours Friday. He said to expect at least three to four inches of snow in the city. 

He said winds could reach 30 mph or more, especially in the northern part of the city.

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City offices will close at 3 p.m. Thursday. Alpha personnel for the Suffolk Police Department, and others as directed by their supervisor, should report for duty as usual.

Suffolk Transit will operate until 6:30 p.m. Thursday. There has also been no change in the refuse pick-up schedule Friday.

Suffolk Public Works crews have been brining major roads, bridges and overpasses in the city, and crews will be working in 12-hour shifts to handle changing road conditions.

More than 7,000 gallons of brine have already been applied to city roadways as of 9 a.m. Thursday, according to a city news release.

Motorists are reminded to stay back and avoid passing snow plows and brining vehicles and give them plenty of room to operate.

To report any issues on city roads, residents can contact Public Works at 514-7600. For Emergency Public Utilities Services, such as broken water pipes, residents can call 514-7000.

Winter Weather Preparedness information can be found on the city’s website at

The city said the status of operations Friday. would be determined later Thursday, based on current and projected conditions.

Suffolk Public Schools announced Thursday morning that due to forecasted inclement weather, all after school activities have been canceled. However, athletic teams traveling for state competitions will proceed as scheduled.

It also said that the School Board meeting scheduled for this evening has been rescheduled to 7 p.m. Feb. 26 at City Hall.

On its Twitter feed, it pointed to its weather procedures.

Suffolk Christian Academy will be dismissing students at 1 p.m. Thursday, and will have no after care, according to an announcement on its Facebook page. All its evening activities. have been canceled.

SCA’s Sustaining the Vision dinner that was set for Friday evening will be rescheduled.

Nansemond-Suffolk Academy has canceled all after school activities Thursday, including spring sports practices.

All the city’s Parks and Recreation activities for Thursday evening, including basketball, soccer and cheerleading practices, as well as tennis open gym, have been canceled due to the incoming storm. Decisions on weekend games will be made Friday.

The Suffolk Public Library’s three locations – the downtown Morgan Memorial Library, the Chuckatuck Library and the North Suffolk Library – will close at 3 p.m. Thursday.

The city is advising that any activities that are scheduled to take place are contingent upon the weather conditions.

There is also a two-hour delay Friday for the following Hampton Roads Navy installations:

  • Naval Air Station Oceana (including Dam Neck Annex)
  • Joint Expeditionary Base Little Creek-Fort Story
  • Naval Station Norfolk
  • Naval Support Activity Hampton Roads (including headquarters, Portsmouth Annex, and Lafayette River Annex)
  • Naval Weapons Station Yorktown (including headquarters and Cheatham Annex)

Personnel at Norfolk Naval Shipyard and Naval Support Activity Hampton Roads-Northwest Annex are asked to their chain of command for reporting requirements.

Some Navy-operated child development centers and children and youth centers will be open for mission-essential personnel only Friday morning. Mission-essential personnel are asked to check with their specific care provider in advance to confirm availability and hours of operation on Friday.

The city’s Public Works Department began treating the city’s roads around noon Wednesday with a brine solution at major bridges and overpasses, which is used to prevent the forming of bonded snow and ice on the roads.

It was to continue putting brine on the roads and bridges Wednesday evening, and crews will continue that process Thursday morning.

This story has been updated.