National Guard mobilized ahead of second winter storm, State of Emergency declared

Virginia News

RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — In anticipation of the second winter storm to blow into Virginia on Thursday night, Governor Ralph Northam has declared a State of Emergency.

Much of the commonwealth is still reeling from the effects of the storm that left over 300,000 Virginians without power Monday, with thousands in rural areas still waiting for power to be restored to their homes.

According to a release from the governor’s office, the State of Emergency declaration was out of concern for those communities that will be hit especially hard by the upcoming storm.

As of part of this declaration, there will be members of the Virginia National Guard deployed across the state to help.

According to the Virginia National Guard, 20 soldiers with chain saws will be on call in Southwest Virginia by Thursday morning. There will be 20 airmen with chain saws on call in the Virginia Beach area. Those groups will have tactical trucks to help them travel to other parts of the state as needed.

There will also be air and army National Guard members on duty in Richmond to help with logistics and to support people in the field.

Those called in to help were alerted on Wednesday evening and have been given until noon on Thursday

“Having two bouts of snow and icy weather back to back makes it more likely communities will need additional help as they continue to recover from the first round of tree-snapping wet snow and ice that we saw Monday,” Northam said.

“While we typically have ample resources for snow storms, these back-to-back events will generate landmark winter weather that requires extra flexibility. I am grateful to the hundreds of first responders and emergency personnel who continue to work around the clock to keep Virginians safe.”

One to three inches of snow are expected in Southwestern Virginia and the Richmond area. Two to five inches are expected from Roanoke to D.C. and four to eight inches are expected West of I-81.

For 8News’ latest weather stories, click here.

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