Storm dumps 1 foot or more in western Va.

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Associated Press and 13News

Posted on January 18, 2013 at 6:42 AM

Updated Friday, Jan 18 at 7:10 PM

RICHMOND (AP) -- Virginia is digging out from the season's first significant snowfall.

Hardest hit by the winter storm Thursday and Friday was southwest Virginia, where the National Weather Service says 13 inches were reported in Giles County, while Grayson County and the Galax area received about a foot. The state's western mountains received 6-9 inches while several inches or more were reported in central and eastern Virginia.

In Amherst County, Thursday night's snow stuck to the roads, causing several accidents. A tow truck had to pull a tractor trailer to safety after it slid off the road.

Appalachian Power says 82,000 electric customers are without power after the heavy, wet snow brought down power lines, while Dominion Virginia Power reports 13,000 power failures, primarily in the Richmond and Southside Virginia area.

Virginia State Police say they were swamped with calls at the height of the storm. Dispatchers fielded more than 760 calls reporting crashes and disabled vehicles.

The Virginia Department of Transportation says its crews and contractors worked through the night to plow and treat roads. Road conditions remain a mixed bag Friday morning.

VDOT says trees downed by the heavy, wet snow have made travel hazardous and it recommends that motorists postpone travel plans until conditions improve.

Hardest hit is Interstate 77. The highway still has snow cover and there are reports of disabled vehicles along the roadway.

In the Richmond area, VDOT said interstates and primary roads are clear of snow, although slush covers many secondary routes. Central Virginia received several inches of snow.

AP-WF-01-18-13 0938GMT

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