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With Snow on the Way, OPM Says Feds ‘Must Depart’ No Later Than 1 p.m.

The federal government’s HR agency instructed D.C.-area federal workers to leave work four hours early or by 1 p.m., whichever is earlier.

The Office of Personnel Management announced Tuesday morning that federal agencies in the Washington, D.C., area will close at 1 p.m. in preparation for a burst of snowfall moving through the region.

The agency instructed local federal workers to leave work four hours early or by 1 p.m., whichever comes sooner.

“All employees MUST DEPART at no later than 1:00 p.m. at which time FEDERAL OFFICES are CLOSED,” the agency wrote. OPM also noted that employees may request unscheduled paid or unpaid leave in order to leave more than four hours early if necessary.

As a result of recent changes in law and regulations governing leave, teleworking employees must continue to work until the end of their workday. And those who commuted to work Tuesday but are telework participants are expected to resume work once they get home.

Although forecasters predicted the storm would only produce 1 to 3 inches of snow accumulation in the hardest hit areas, the National Weather Service warned of an unusually high intensity of snowfall.

“[There is an] impressive burst of snow upstream over West Virginia with visibility to 1/4 mile or less, and already reports of accumulations of an inch in under 30 minutes,” the Weather Service wrote. “It’s not the duration or total amounts expected, but the intensity and timing (with the evening commute for the I-95 corridor) that are expected to have a high impact.”