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Slow down, stay alert for VDOT mowing crews

Crews are out along roadsides in northern Virginia, and the Virginia Department of Transportation reminds drivers to slow down and stay alert in work zones where they are mowing grass, pruning trees, cutting brush and removing litter.

Most roads will see up to three cycles of mowing through the fall. Crews may increase that frequency in locations where safety issues and weather patterns require. The first round of mowing in northern Virginia is expected to be complete by mid-June, according to a news release.

Branco Vlacich, VDOT’s district maintenance engineer for northern Virginia, was quoted as saying, “Our priority is giving everyone who uses state roadways—drivers, cyclists and pedestrians—a clear and safe view of their route. While we have sought ways to keep our mowing plan frugal, we also give crews and contractors the flexibility to address problem areas along roadsides and in medians.”

Roadsides of interstates, primary roads and high-volume secondary routes are scheduled to be mowed three times through late October. Litter will be removed at the same frequency. Crews mow up to ten feet from the pavement’s edge or to the center of the adjacent ditch, according to VDOT.

Roadsides of low-volume primary and most secondary routes will be mowed twice between through late October. Crews mow up to nine feet from the pavement edge.

Roadsides along unpaved routes and low-volume subdivision streets will be mowed once through late October, unless safety issues require more frequent attention. Crews mow up to nine feet from the pavement edge.

Many of VDOT’s maintenance crews and contractors mow in a slow-moving mobile operation, with tractors followed by crash cushion trucks to provide protection from traffic. Drivers are asked to:

• Watch for posted signs, slow-moving trucks, and crews along roadsides and in medians
• Slow speeds
• Move into the opposite lane where possible when approaching the work zone.

These courtesies allow VDOT crews “space to work while helping keep both crews and motorists safe,” the news release said.

Through the fall, crews will continue to address safety issues where vegetation blocks sight. Go to VDOT’s “report a road problem” page at or call 800-367-7623 (800-FOR-ROAD), TTY 711.

VDOT manages vegetation only on the state right-of-way, which includes roadsides along interstates and most primary and secondary roads. Local governments or landowners are responsible for maintaining right-of-way along city streets and secondary roads in Arlington County. For locally maintained roads, VDOT advises drivers to contact their public works agency for more information.

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