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Ken Cocker
Ken Cocker
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Virginia Sen. Tim Kaine among hundreds trapped overnight in snowstorm traffic jam


(WASHINGTON) — Sen. Tim Kaine tweeted Tuesday that he was among the hundreds of people trapped overnight in a miles-long traffic jam on Interstate 95 in Virginia following a multi-vehicle accident Monday afternoon.

Kaine tweeted that he’d started his usual commute to the Capitol at 1 p.m. Monday afternoon and 19 hours later, he and other Virginians were still stuck in the traffic backup following a heavy snowstorm.

A crash involving six tractor-trailers was first reported by the Virginia Department of Transportation at 1:30 p.m. Monday. Since then, drivers were stranded across a 48-mile stretch of highway as authorities worked to clear the traffic.

The giant traffic jam came amid a snowstorm that shut down much of the Washington area, creating hazardous travel conditions.

Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam tweeted Tuesday morning that his team has worked throughout the night to respond. An emergency message has been sent out to drivers trying to connect them with assistance.

VDOT said on Twitter that Interstate 95 remained shut down and “travel is expected to remain hazardous for most of the day.”

In an interview with a local Washington TV station Tuesday morning, Northam was pressed over a lack of preparedness for the storm and potential driving hazards.

“It’s one step at a time and, you know, what happened after midnight is we just turned into a, literally a skating rink and trucks were jackknifing,” Northam told Fox 5 DC. “And once that happens — once you get the backup — it’s very, very difficult to get in our resources and get our equipment in. So, we’re just we’re going from both ends, as fast as we can, and doing everything that we can.”

Northam said state authorities are not sure at this time how long it will take to clear the road, but “we will give updates as needed through the day and again, some of these things are difficult to predict but I can tell you that there are a lot of people, whether it be the state police or emergency management, or VDOT folks, they are working as hard as they can to get to people and to clear the roads.”

While traffic is slowly moving again, many drivers are still stranded, including Kaine, who, according to his office, will try to finally get to his Capitol Hill later afternoon, more than 24 hours after he started.

The National Guard is on standby to potentially assist, but Northam said the problem right now is getting available resources to where they need to go.

ABC News’ Davone Morales contributed to this report.

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