Gov. Northam has declared a state of emergency in advance of Storm Florence


Governor Ralph Northam has declared a state of emergency in anticipation of Tropical Storm Florence. 

The state of emergency was made to mobilize resources in preparation of the storm. 

This will help mitigate damage in Virginia and help other state in the path of Florence. 

Governor Northam Declares State of Emergency in Advance of Tropical Storm Florence 

RICHMOND—Governor  Ralph Northam declared a state of emergency today 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.

State agencies are working closely with  localities to identify any needs in advance of the storm, and to  pre-position resources where they will be most effective. The state  Emergency Operations Center will be staffed next week in preparation for  the storm and will transition into 24/7 operations as needed when the  storm approaches.

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.

Virginians should 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.

In advance of the storm, assemble your  emergency kit including food, water, medications, pet supplies and  important documents that you will need to take with you if asked to  evacuate in short order. To learn more about what to include in your  emergency kit and how to prepare for hurricanes, visit

It is also important for residents of  Coastal Virginia to “Know Your Zone” before this storm impacts Virginia.  If you live in Hampton Roads, the Middle Peninsula, Northern Neck or  Eastern Shore, learn which new hurricane evacuation zone you live in by  visiting

Stay tuned to local media in the coming  days to keep close tabs on Hurricane Florence as it approaches the  Commonwealth. Be prepared to take action, and know that storm forecast  can vary significantly over just a few hours.



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