Area power companies are ready for the storm with crews and trucks on standby.
Dominion Virginia Power, PEPCO, Rappahannock Electric Cooperative, and BGE have been watching the approaching storm and are expected to make adjustments as the storm begins.
Heavy, wet snow and ice can bring tree limbs into contact with power lines to cause power outages. Heavy rain and oversaturated soil can allow trees already weakened by previous storms to fall onto power lines and equipment to cause power outages.
Outages can also occur due to drivers skidding into utility poles along wet roads.
In addition to damaging the electric system, snow and ice may considerably slow crew efforts to reach substations and outage areas to make repairs.
Utility crews — or highway crews when available — must first clear snow to gain access. Icy roads make travel impossible, so crews cannot start repair work until roads become safely passable.
If you see downed power lines, stay away and call your local power company:
Pepco: 877-737-2662 (1-877-PEPCO )
Dominion Virginia Power: 866-366-4357 (1-866-DOM-HELP)