State officials assessing Ian storm damage as local residents help with recovery

The Virginia Department of Emergency Management (VDEM) is preparing for the worst which could...
The Virginia Department of Emergency Management (VDEM) is preparing for the worst which could look like flooding, severe damage and down power lines.(WWBT)
Published: Oct. 1, 2022 at 8:02 PM EDT
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RICHMOND, Va. (WWBT) -Though the impacts aren’t as bad as they are in Florida or South Carolina, remnants of Ian are still being felt here at home. Originally, we were expecting several inches of rain in Richmond. As of last night, we only got a little over one inch. The Virginia Department of Emergency Management said that’s part of why the state’s emergency support team has been downgraded from a red alert to a yellow. This means the state is ready if resources are needed.

“We kind of dodged a bullet with this one with the flooding potential,” said Jason Elmore who serves as the Deputy Director of Communications for the Virginia Department of Emergency Management.

VDEM monitored the storm Friday night. They said there were some downed trees across the state but no major incidents were reported. However, the potential for more rain isn’t over.

“Our biggest concern is going to be some tidal surges with the high tide on the coast but here in the Richmond Metro area things are going well,” Elmore stated.

Teams from the Department of Defense and FEMA were in Virginia before Ian moved through. While most of those resources have since moved out, officials are still stressing caution while out on the roads or near the water.

“Just pay attention for any kind of rain because if any more rain comes through we may have some potential for some flash flooding,” Elmore said.

Over at Virginia Red Cross, volunteers only had to help six families in the state. With less resources needed in the commonwealth, the Red Cross is able to send more volunteers to Florida. The organization has now deployed 18 volunteers including Jerry Silva who left from Richmond International Airport on Saturday.

“Excitement. To go down there and take care of the clients and take care of my fellow red cross volunteers both volunteer and paid staff,” Silva explained.

Silva will stay in Florida for two weeks to help with recovery efforts. His skills will be especially useful to response teams because he’s bilingual.

“I want to ensure that the Hispanic population gets the representation that they need and more importantly that they understand benefits we have for them,” said Silva.