Gov. Northam declares emergency as Michael approaches

tropical storm michael map

Governor Ralph Northam today declared a state of emergency in anticipation of impacts from Tropical Storm Michael. The order is designed to mobilize resources, help Virginia mitigate any damage, and to streamline the process that the Commonwealth uses to provide assistance to other states through the Emergency Management Assistance Compact. State agencies are working closely with localities to identify any needs and to provide resources.

In its latest advisory, the National Hurricane Center said Michael is producing heavy rainfall and tropical-storm-force wind gusts over the Carolinas. The storm is moving towards the northeast at about 23 miles per hour. The storm’s center is expected to move across southeastern Virginia tonight before moving into the Atlantic Ocean. Maximum sustained winds are near 50 miles per hour.

“As Tropical Storm Michael turns to the Commonwealth, I want to urge all Virginians to prepare for the serious possibility of flash floods, tropical storm force winds, tornadoes, and power outages,” said Northam. “I am declaring a state of emergency in order to provide state assets to Virginians and to assist our neighbors in states who are dealing with the devastating effects of this historic storm. My thoughts are with all those along with the Gulf Coast and my administration will continue our outreach to governors and state agencies where Hurricane Michael has produced widespread damage.”

Virginians should visit www.VAemergency.gov to learn about how to prepare for hurricanes, tornadoes and flood threats. Remember to “turn around and don’t drown.” Do not drive across any flooded roadway, as it only takes six inches of water to move a vehicle and roads may be washed out beneath the floodwaters. Visit www.511Virginia.org or call 511 for real-time road conditions.

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Truman Lewis
A former reporter and bureau chief, Truman Lewis has covered presidential campaigns, state politics and stories ranging from organized crime to environmental and consumer protection.