Winter snow: Words of warning for DC, MD, VA

(WJLA) - On the day after New Year’s, a storm began -- and along with it came a rain-snow mix and words of warning from the District to Northern Virginia.

"Coming down pretty badly actually," said Leesburg resident, Conor Walsh.

Road crews scrambled to ready salt trucks and head out.

"[It's] going to be a long night, yes, definitely long night," said DDOT plow driver, Corbin Patterson.

"It's crazy -- I thought it was going to be two to three inches of snow, but it's a blizzard -- it's nuts," added Leesburg resident, Joey Barnett.

A Dulles toll road was packed with bumper-to-bumper traffic, while Loudoun County roads were already covered with snow. The weather ended up turning an already busy evening commute into a nightmare.

"There's like three inches. I think we're going to get more than three inches," said plow driver Tony Rios.

The dead-end of the 267-Greenway turned into a dead stop, and traffic was backed up by icy roads and numerous slide-offs. And everywhere, there is concern about what will happen with the upcoming Friday cold.

"We're mainly concerned about it freezing up, so that's why we're getting salt down now -- gotta get ready," said Corbin Patterson.

Private plow drivers like Tony Rios are among the few enjoying this:

"I like it because it's going to make me some money!"

But for the rest of us, even a shorts-wearing Joey Barnett, this sudden storm equals misery on the roads:

"Some people are flying down the road," he said. "You gotta go slowly and be careful. Make sure everybody is safe."

Meanwhile in Frederick, as the afternoon turned to evening, the snow started laying on the trees, the grass, and then finally, the roads.

The inches piled up for many, who decided it was time to get to work and shovel.

"The gentleman here has a bad heart, he can't do it. And the lady right here, she's like 70, and I do it for her too," said helpful neighbor Earl Brown.

Salt truck driver Tim Lewis also helps out by working to keep things ice-free at local businesses. But on Thursday night, hard job got harder.

"My conveyor belt got jammed, and trying to get it freed up so I can get the salt down on this property," he said.

With a snow emergency in effect, plows are working to keep roads clear, but it's still been rough in some spots -- a driver even abandoned this vehicle.

Despite the hard work involved when it comes to a snowy storm like this, at least it's not an awful view:

"It's gorgeous, it's perfect right now -- not too heavy, it's like icing," described Lauren Reis of Frederick.