Gov. McAuliffe declares state of emergency

RICHMOND, Va. (WAVY) – Gov. Terry McAuliffe has declared a state of emergency as yet another winter storm barrels down on the Commonwealth.

Declaring a state of emergency authorizes state agencies to position resources to help local agencies if needed during the storm.

“This storm could bring difficult travel and widespread power outages for the next few days,” said Governor McAuliffe. “It is also going to be very cold with gusty winds across Virginia. Please postpone travel during the storm, charge up your mobile devices so you can stay in touch, and take time to check on your neighbors in case they need help.”

The storm is expected to begin as rain and switch over to ice before finally transitioning to snow, making roads treacherous for motorists across the state.

Additionally, the Virginia National Guard is authorized to bring up to 100 personnel on state active duty. That personnel is expected to be in place Monday night and will rapidly respond if needed.

Gov. McAuliffe’s office is offering the following tips for Virginians before, during and after the storm:

  • Be prepared to take care of yourself and your family for at least 72 hours, in case roads are blocked and/or there are power outages.
  • Prepare a three-day supply of food that includes a gallon of water per person per day and food that does not require electricity to prepare it.
  • Have a battery powered and/or hand-crank radio and extra batteries for emergency information. Listen to local weather forecasts and instructions from local officials.
  • Always run generators outside in well-ventilated areas. Never use a portable generator in any enclosed or partially enclosed space.
  • Only travel if absolutely necessary. Roads can become very hazardous very quickly. Always wear a seatbelt, and know road conditions before you leave. Road condition information is available 24/7 by calling 511 or going to www.511Virginia.org
  • Have emergency supplies in your vehicle. If you are stranded you will need water, food, blankets, flashlight and extra batteries at a minimum.
  • Avoid overexertion while shoveling snow and cleaning up from the storm, no matter your age or physical condition. Shoveling snow or pushing a car can bring on a heart attack or make other medical conditions worse.
  • If you need help for an elderly or disabled person during the storm, need information on warming shelters or are concerned about an unsheltered individual or family, call 211 or visit www.211virginia.org. When you call 211, a trained professional will suggest sources of help using one of the largest databases of health and human services in your community and statewide.
  • Get winter weather preparedness information at www.ReadyVirginia.gov and download the new Ready Virginia app for iPhones and Android devices.
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