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Fairfax County police car lights flashing (file photo)

(Updated at 10:15 a.m. on 9/2/2022) Fairfax County police have arrested four people after chasing a vehicle on Route 1 that was allegedly stolen.

The north left shoulder, left lane, and center lane of Route 1 (also known as Richmond Highway) were closed today (Thursday) at the Fort Hunt Road intersection in Belle Haven, just south of the Capital Beltway, according to the Virginia Department of Transportation’s traffic information site.

According to the county police department, an officer spotted a vehicle going north on Route 1 that had been reported stolen in a Prince George’s County carjacking. When the officer attempted a traffic stop near Fort Hunt Road, the “car did not stop and continued to drive away,” a spokesperson said.

The resulting pursuit ended in the Huntington Avenue area when the officer deployed a Precision Immobilization Technique, a manuever for stopping high-speed vehicles that the FCPD pioneered but has been criticized as risky.

The move prompted the car to roll over into southbound Route 1 traffic, police told FFXnow.

Four occupants of the vehicle were taken into custody and transported to a hospital with injuries not considered life-threatening, according to police. No officers were injured.

The FCPD is advising community members to avoid the area.

The department will identify those arrested — all of them adults — and announce charges tomorrow (Friday).

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A map depicts the location of a proposed floodwall in Belle Haven (via U.S. Army Corps of Engineers)

A floodwall in the Belle Haven community could help address Northern Virginia’s flood risk.

A recent study looked at the west bank of the Potomac River from Arlington to Prince William County for solutions to improve resiliency and reduce risks to human health and safety, economic damages, and disruption of critical infrastructure, according to a presentation.

While there were multiple options, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers found a 5,600-foot-long floodwall in Belle Haven and a 2,500-foot-long floodwall along the Arlington Water Pollution Control Plant on S. Glebe Road were the most feasible.

The total cost of both would be $52.6 million, which includes a 45% contingency on costs, and is estimated to reduce about $66 million in potential damage.

The proposed Belle Haven floodwall would begin around Golf Course Square and extend down Boulevard View before turning west. Then, an earthen levee would be constructed and end near Westview Dog Park, according to the Feasibility Report and Environmental Assessment by Army Corps of Engineers, Baltimore District, and the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments.

A map shows the potential flooding of Belle Haven by 2030 (via U.S. Army Corps of Engineers)

A map of Belle Haven shows that by 2030, the flood risk could extend to the Belle View Shopping Center, Belle Haven Country Club and other parts of the community.

The Belle Haven floodwall would have permanent aesthetic and recreation impacts, as well as stream impacts, according to the presentation. The floodwall would be about 6 feet tall on average.

During construction, there would also be temporary stream impacts. Mitigation would be required for permanent stream impacts.

A rendering shows what a 6.5 foot floodwall could look like in Belle Haven (via U.S. Army Corps of Engineers)

The public can comment on the study through Thursday, June 30, by emailing the project team at DC-Metro-CSRM-Study@usace.army.mil. The Corps of Engineers will respond to comments and revise the report between July and September, determing if this is the preferred option by November.

After further study, design — which hasn’t been funded yet — wouldn’t begin on the project until at least 2024.

The study was conducted as Northern Virginia has seen damaging storms over the years, to include the Chesapeake and Potomac Hurricane of 1933, Hurricane Agnes (1972), Hurricane Fran (1996), Nor’easter (1998), Hurricane Floyd (1999), Hurricane Isabel (2003), Hurricane Irene (2011) and Hurricane Sandy (2012).

Hurricane Isabel resulted in extreme water levels and caused millions of dollars of damage to residences, businesses and critical infrastructure, according to the study.

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A bear crosses GW Parkway in Belle Haven (courtesy of Jaclyn B/Nextdoor)

(Updated at 7:40 p.m.) Why’d the bear cross GW Parkway?

Possibly to find an easy meal or explore its landscape after a winter hibernation, according to the Virginia Department of Wildlife Resources.

A bear was sighted in the Belle Haven area on Thursday (June 9), and one Nextdoor user snapped some photos of it crossing George Washington Memorial Parkway near Belle View Boulevard, not too far from the Mount Vernon Trail.

The sightings piqued some social media users’ interest, with residents suggesting names for the bear and sharing photos of it around the neighborhood.

The Fairfax County Police Department says its Animal Protection Police and wildlife management specialist were alerted to bear sightings in the area over the weekend. The department has also received recent reports of a young bear moving through McLean.

Last week, a bear was also seen wandering around Arlington, though it’s unclear whether any of the bears that have been spotted are the same one.

While bear encounters aren’t common in Fairfax County, they’re not unusual during the spring and summer, when young bears old enough to be independent from their mothers spread out and seek food in green spaces that wildlife uses to travel, according to the FCPD.

Bear sightings have increased in recent years, as the animal’s population grows.

“This trend will continue in the future,” the county police told FFXnow. “Bears have adapted to living near people and we must also learn to adapt to bear activity and take responsible action to prevent conflicts from occurring in our communities by removing food sources that attract bears.”

The bear could be out looking for an easy meal as bears are emerging from their winter dens hungry, or it could be a cub exploring the landscape, according to the Virginia Department of Wildlife Resources, which says it’s important for homeowners to secure all potential food sources to reduce bear encounters.

Homeowners should secure garbage, compost, barbeque grills, birdseed and pet food.

“The goal is to make human sources of food harder for a bear to get than what nature provides — especially food that is high in fat and calories,” says Nelson Lafon, Forest Wildlife Program Manager for the Virginia Department of Wildlife Resources.

Photo courtesy of Jaclyn B/Nextdoor

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The intersection of Fort Hunt Road and Belle Haven Road in Belle Haven (via Google Maps)

A bicyclist has been hospitalized after a crash in Belle Haven last night (Monday) that involved another cyclist and an SUV.

Fairfax County police were on the scene of the crash at Belle Haven and Fort Hunt roads around 7:30 p.m., the department reported. The intersection was closed for more than three hours while police investigated.

One of the bicyclists, a man, was transported to a hospital with life-threatening injuries, according to police, who said the SUV driver remained on the scene.

The crash remains under investigation by detectives with the Fairfax County Police Department’s Crash Reconstruction Unit.

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