Virginia Civil Air Patrol Responds to Historic Snowfall, Traffic Jam
CHESTERFIELD, Va. (January 4, 2022) – On Tuesday afternoon, the Virginia Wing of the Civil Air Patrol responded to requests from the Virginia Department of Emergency Management (VDEM) and Department of Transportation (VDOT) to conduct aerial survey flights of the roads between Richmond and Quantico.
Following the heaviest snowfall recorded in the region for several years - parts of Interstate 95 closed, stranding numerous motorists on portions of a 50-mile stretch of the highway between Richmond and Washington, DC, partly due to disabled trucks blocking the way, according to authorities.
A total of fourteen personnel participated, including two air crews from Leesburg and Chesterfield, who flew low-level photographic runs to document road conditions and any automobile accidents, major traffic logjams, road damage & debris, stranded motorists & individuals in distress, pedestrians on highway, or other significant issues such as downed power lines. At the same time, an incident command was established virtually to coordinate and support efforts, and individual members were activated to monitor radio communications along the flight routes.
Air operations and support are expected to continue through tomorrow morning.
About Virginia Wing
The Virginia Wing of the Civil Air Patrol, with 22 squadrons spread throughout the Commonwealth has approximately 1,800 members, 12 light aircraft, and 29 multi-purpose vehicles. These assets are available to federal, state and local governments, emergency responders and law enforcement agencies to perform search and rescue, homeland security, disaster relief, humanitarian assistance and counter-drug missions. For more information on the Virginia Wing, visit the wing’s website at https://vawg.cap.gov/ and Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/vawgcap
About Civil Air Patrol
Established in 1941, Civil Air Patrol is the longtime auxiliary of the U.S. Air Force and as such is a valued member of its Total Force. In its auxiliary role, CAP operates a fleet of 560 single-engine aircraft and more than 2,100 small Unmanned Aircraft Systems (sUAS). It performs about 90% of continental U.S. inland search and rescue missions as tasked by the Air Force Rescue Coordination Center and is credited by the AFRCC with saving an average of 82 lives annually. CAP’s 56,000 members also perform homeland security, disaster relief and drug interdiction missions at the request of federal, state and local agencies. Operating as a nonprofit organization, CAP also plays a leading role in STEM/aerospace education, and its members serve as mentors to more than 23,000 young people participating in CAP’s Cadet Programs.
For More Information:
Capt Christopher Freeze – Public Information Officer