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HOV Lanes Open In VA But Rural Areas Remain Under Snow

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By Mana Rabiee

Virginia Governor Bob McDonnel says he expects the state's HOV lanes will be cleared for this morning's rush hour -- but cautions that rural communities in Northern and Northwestern counties may remain under snow for much of the day.

The Governor says Virginia's Department of Transportation needs at least until this afternoon to clear all corners of the Northern and Northwest counties, including parts of Fairfax.

Some 500 members of the National Guard have been deployed to those areas. McDonnel says heavy snow plowing vehicles were sent in over the weekend as reinforcements -- for areas with the heaviest accumulation. "Right now the National Guard has about 25 active missions to go into the areas to help on any number of things from delivering supplies to picking up emergency personnel to bringing people to hospitals."

More than 100,000 residents were without power last night. McDonnell expects that number to rise as tree limbs give out under the weight of heavy snow that froze over night.

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