Blog creator

Live Blog: Severe Storms Invade DC Area

From flooding at a subway station to a water rescue and fire caused by a lightning strike, the DMV weathered severe storms through Wednesday night.

WASHINGTON — Cleanup efforts are set to begin Thursday morning after severe weather and storms wreaked havoc in the DC area Wednesday night. Heavy rains caused flash flooding, power outages, downed trees and a fire caused by a lightning strike on Wednesday.

A few showers and thunderstorms will persist overnight, but no heavy showers. It will be warm but less humid on Thursday with a morning shower or a possible thunderstorm.

Here’s a recap of Wednesday’s inclement weather as it happened.

Click here to see the full forecast.

Click here to view our interactive radar.

Power outages:

As of 11:30 p.m., according to Dominion Energy’s power outage map, nearly 4,500 customers are without power. Pepco’s outage map shows around 144 outages in DC and Maryland – down significantly from 3,400 earlier tonight.

There is no word at this time on when the rest of the outages can be restored.

Click here to check Dominion Energy outages in your area.

Click here to check for Pepco outages in your area.

A power outage can be caused by a myriad of things, but it’s important to be as prepared as possible, especially in bad weather. Extended power outages can impact everyone, from a home to an entire community. This can cause communication problems, prevent the use of medical devices, impact access to water and cause food to spoil while grocery stores may be closed.

Dominion Energy says residents should not connect portable generators to a home’s electrical system. Under no circumstances should you bring a generator into your home to create heat. The odorless, colorless carbon monoxide from gas heaters and generators can build up, causing injury or even death.

RELATED: What to Do If You’re Caught in a Storm Outside

Damage and rescues:

5 p.m.

  • Prince George’s County fire crews were dispatched to a two-story house in the 4400 block of Saint Gregory Way in Accokeek for a reported fire following a lightning strike. Crews on site found smoke coming from the roof and a fire in the attic as a result. Residents managed to self-evacuate.

RELATED: ‘You’d Never Think Just Staying Out Would Cost You Your Life’ | 3 dead and 1 seriously injured after lightning strike near White House

5:30 p.m.

  • Flooded roads in northeast DC
  • DC crews performed a successful water rescue in the 600 block of Rhode Island Avenue, NE after an occupied car was stuck in high water. The victim was removed and placed for evaluation by EMS.
  • Commuters captured flooding inside the WMATA South Capitol subway station. WMATA has not confirmed any service interruptions as a result. However, there is currently a green line delay due to a switch malfunction.

It is important to know how to prepare and stay safe in severe weather. There are several ways to make sure you’re ready.

  • High winds regularly blow down trees and heavy branches in the DMV area, so avoid standing or walking under the tree canopy.
  • Be stocked up: Have medical equipment, medical supplies or any other essential medication on hand and in sufficient quantity for 5-7 days.
  • Determine how and where everyone will meet if you are separated.
  • Sign up for text alerts/weather warnings that may be offered by your locality.
  • Secure garbage cans, garden furniture or anything that could cause damage.

RELATED: Tips for Staying Safe During High Winds

Traffic alerts and delays:

5 p.m.

  • Herndon Parkway closed in both directions at Palmer Drive due to an accident. Power lines are down and police are advising the public to find an alternate route.

6 p.m.

  • Three lanes of a Prince George’s County Freeway are blocked on the I-95/495 North Outer Loop past MD-450 (Exit 20/Annapolis Road). Delays are currently about four miles.

7 p.m.

  • Virginia Railway Express (VRE) trains are back but may experience additional delays due to track congestion. At 6 p.m., train 307 was 25 minutes late. Train 329 was facing 20-minute delays. Train 336 also suffered 25-minute delays.

If you can’t stay home, AAA suggests drivers always check weather conditions before heading out. Drivers should always travel with a full tank of gas, a fully charged cell phone and wear a seat belt.

If the traffic lights are not working due to a power outage, you should stop at the intersection and then continue when you know other approaching cars, bicycles or pedestrians have stopped. Treat a darkened traffic light as a four-way intersection.

RELATED: What If You Get Stuck? Here’s how to make an emergency car kit

RELATED: Lightning strike starts fire at Montgomery County home, authorities say


Click here to see all area closures.

WATCH NEXT: How to Stay Safe During Potential Storm Power Outages

RELATED: TIMELINE: When to expect the strongest storms

WUSA9 is now enabled Roku and Amazon Fire TVs. Download the apps today for live newscasts and video on demand.

Download the WUSA9 app to get the latest news, weather and important stories at your fingertips.

Sign up for the Get Up DC newsletter: Your forecast. Your journey. Your news.
Sign up for the Capitol Breach email newsletter, which will provide you with the latest news and a summary of the investigation into the Capitol Riots on January 6, 2021.