Virginia Governor Ralph Northam declared a state of emergency in anticipation of the potential impact from Tropical Storm Florence. The order is designed to mobilize resources in preparations of the storm and to help Virginia mitigate any damage and to streamline the process that the Commonwealth uses to provide assistance to other states vulnerable to Florence.
“While the impacts of Tropical Storm Florence to Virginia are still uncertain, forecasts increasingly expect the storm to strengthen into a major hurricane that could seriously affect the East Coast and Virginians,” said Governor Northam. “Accordingly, I am declaring a state of emergency so that we can begin to prepare state assets, and I encourage Virginians to monitor forecasts and make their own preparations now.”
A state of emergency allows the Commonwealth to mobilize resources, including the Virginia National Guard, and pre-position people and equipment to assist in storm response and recovery efforts.
While the track of Tropical Storm Florence is still uncertain, it appears increasingly likely that Virginia may see significant impacts from this storm next week. Impacts include possible flooding, high winds, and potential storm surge.
The Governor’s Office, the Virginia Department of Emergency Management (VDEM), the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), the Virginia National Guard, the Virginia State Police, and other state agencies have already begun preparations for the impacts of Tropical Storm Florence.
Due to the uncertainty of the storm’s track this many days in advance, VDEM encourages all residents of Virginia to prepare for impacts from this storm. These can range from high winds and storm surge in coastal Virginia to significant flooding both along the coast and in rivers and streams in the western part of the state. Citizens should remember that flash floods could happen at any time and that flooding is the most deadly and damaging part of any hurricane.
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