COMMUTE

Traffic and accidents prevalent due to wet weather

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DALE CITY, Va. (WJLA) - Our trip begins in Springfield, where by late morning, traffic is already backed up.

Delays in Virginia

That’s why traveler Roger Stull is packing up the family – including his dog Caesar – and leaving for South Carolina on Tuesday instead of Wednesday.

"It's gonna be an ugly drive all the way down," he says.

The wet weather combined with heavy volume has led to crashes throughout the day along I-95. Emergency and fire crews, along with state police and the Virginia Department of Transportation, are all busy responding while trying to keep traffic moving along.

Farther south in Occoquan, we ran into Rebecca Miller, who got picked up in Maryland by relatives from New Jersey on their way to Thanksgiving in North Carolina.

"We're hoping to get a bit ahead of the storm, so we're hoping to get to our destination before downpours this evening," she says.

Meanwhile in Dale City, we put traffic to the time test. The two-mile trip from the rest stop to Dumfries took 11-and-a-half minutes – and if you think about upping the mileage, that’s a whole lot of time to fill.

Ken Saunders doesn’t care how long it takes though. He’s driving from Pittsburgh to Virginia Beach to see his daughter, who’s returning from a six-month deployment in Afghanistan.

"The congestion, the rain, doesn't bother us at all because ultimately we're gonna get to see her," he says.

Later that evening, 395 and 95 South in Virginia looked terrible for the better part of 40 miles. Even for what's been dubbed the worst commute in America, it was extreme.

And things didn't get much better to the north.

WTOP reported it was "heavy and slow across the Legion Bridge, and as you continue northbound into Montgomery County."

In Maryland, the beltway was a disaster in both directions.

"It's so crowded and raining, it's very bad," said Silver Spring resident Masta Nadew.

Rush hour plus Thanksgiving travelers plus rain was an extremely bad combination, and unfortunately, things may be just as bad or worse on Wednesday.

There was also bumper-to-bumper traffic waiting to use this gas station in Silver Spring, where some told ABC7 they had a way to avoid the mess.

"I'm not leaving until Thursday morning, no traffic then," said Melissa Hayes-Gehrke.

The Maryland State Highway Administration and Virginia DOT both say the weather has thrown a real wrench into things. In both states, they say it's led people to change their travel plans.

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