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Governor declares State of Emergency as remnants from Ida affect Virginia

Flooding in Buchanan County in far SW VA/Courtesy Roanoke County Fire-Rescue & WCYB
Flooding in Buchanan County in far SW VA/Courtesy Roanoke County Fire-Rescue & WCYB(Roanoke County Fire-Rescue & WCYB)
Published: Aug. 31, 2021 at 3:00 PM EDT
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RICHMOND, Va. (WDBJ) - Governor Ralph Northam has declared a State of Emergency to respond to impacts from Tropical Depression Ida, forecast to cause heavy rains and potential flooding along the I-81 and I-66 corridors, according to meteorologists. Areas in the far southwest region have already experienced heavy rainfall in recent days, leading to flash floods. There is also a continued risk of tornadoes across the Commonwealth through Wednesday.

“My thoughts are with those across the country impacted by this devastating storm,” said Governor Northam. “While we’re fortunate in Virginia to have avoided the hurricane itself, heavy rainfall is expected to cause additional flash flooding and dangerous conditions in portions of the Commonwealth. I’m grateful to the first responders and rescue crews currently on the ground, and I urge Virginians in these regions to stay alert.”

Severe weather began hitting parts of the Southwest region Monday, and is expected to continue as remnants from Tropical Depression Ida arrive in the Commonwealth, according to WDBJ7 meteorologists. Heavy rainfall has already caused flash flooding in Buchanan County, with potential for additional flooding, downed trees, electrical outages, and impacts to roads, bridges, and other infrastructure. Impacts are expected to be felt particularly along the I-81 and I-66 corridors.

A state of emergency allows the Commonwealth to mobilize resources and deploy people and equipment to assist in response and recovery efforts. The declaration also allows officials from Virginia to coordinate planning and evacuation resources with state and local partners. This action does not apply to individuals or private businesses.

The full text of Executive Order 81 is available here.

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