Strong Storms Hit Area
Alexandria, Falls Church, Arlington, Fairfax Counties affected by major storm.
Update 5:39 p.m. - A powerful afternoon storm on Saturday carrying 60 to 70-mile per hour winds has knocked out power to thousands of homes across Northern Virginia.
Dominion Power reports outages for 59,841 homes across Fairfax County, 16,227 in Loudoun County, 2,577 in Falls Church, 2,513 in Fairfax City, and 3,425 in Alexandria. More than 5,000 were without power in Arlington.
The weather closed the Burke Centre Festival, the King Street Arts Festival in Alexandria and several other outdoor events Saturday afternoon.
There are unconfirmed reports that a tornado did touch down in Fairfax County possibly near Falls Church; officials are looking into it. (Update 8:26 p.m. - Fairfax County officials have confirmed that all damage was caused by straight-line winds and there was no evidence of a tornado or other rotating winds.)
Out at Dulles International Airport, an unnamed airline employee told Patch two United 737 passenger planes were "blown three feet off their gates." Call your airline before heading to Dulles, Reagan National or Baltimore Washington International airports.
In all, more than 100,000 are without power across Northern Virginia, according to Dominion Virginia Power.
To find specific areas without power, visit: http://outagemap.dom.com/DomComFlexOutageViewer/index.html. To report an outage, call 1-866-DOM-HELP.
Update 4:28 p.m. - The worst of the storm has passed over the area and is heading away to the east quickly. Rain may come in heavy spurts into this evening.
Sunday is expected to be mostly sunny with a high temperature of 81 and just a 10 percent chance of rain.
There are more than 16,600 homes without power across Fairfax County. About 12,000 appear to be without power in Arlington and Alexandria, according to Dominion Virginia Power.
To report an outage (even if you think your neighbor already has), call 1-866-DOM-HELP.
Original post - 4:05 p.m. Saturday:
Arlington, Alexandria, the City of Falls Church and surrounding Fairfax County areas are under a tornado warning until 4:15 p.m. A severe thunderstorm warning will remain in place until at least 4:30 p.m. as a line of storms and rain moves through the area.
Residents are advised to move into the lowest, most interior, windowless area of their structure, such as the basement, an interior bathroom or closet, or under the basement stairs.
Tornadoes are often punctuated by low, dark or greenish clouds and may come with large hail.
An airline employee, who asked to remain anonymous as he were not authorized to speak, reported that the storms were so strong that two United Airlines 737s were blown three feet away from their gates by wind. Some large carts on a ramp at the airport were reportedly blown into the engine of an Aer Lingus plane. Several flights at Dulles, Reagan National and Baltimore airports have been diverted. Call your airline or check online before heading to the airport this evening.