Governor Declares State of Emergency for Commonwealth
Posted at 4:10 p.m.
Governor Terry McAuliffe today declared a state of emergency, an action that authorizes state agencies to be ready to assist local governments in responding to the major snow storm that is forecast to hit the Commonwealth starting tomorrow. In declaring a state of emergency, the governor authorizes state agencies to identify and position resources for quick response anywhere they are needed in Virginia.
“Just as state government is preparing for this storm, I urge every Virginian to take proper preparations,” said McAuliffe. “Prepare to limit unnecessary travel during the storm, have emergency supplies on hand and be ready in the event that power in your area goes out.”
Here in Fairfax County, public safety and emergency management officials are already reviewing plans and procedures and putting together staffing plans for people and resources. The county’s emergency operations center will continue to monitor the weather — in addition to county infrastructure, utility services, road conditions, etc. — and will be holding regular conference calls with National Weather Service meteorologists to determine local impacts of the weather on Fairfax County.
Our emergency management office encourages residents to take some time today and tomorrow to make sure you and your family are fully prepared in case we are hit with the high end of snow estimates.
- Be prepared to take care of yourself and your family for at least 3 days (72 hours) in case roads are blocked and/or there are power outages.
- Make sure you have a three-day supply of food that does not require electricity to prepare it and water (a gallon of water per person per day).
- Have a battery powered and/or hand-crank radio and extra batteries for emergency information. Listen to local weather forecasts and instructions from county officials.
- Always run generators outside in well-ventilated areas. Never use a portable generator in any enclosed or partially enclosed space.
- Only travel if absolutely necessary. Roads can become very hazardous very quickly. Always wear a seatbelt, and know road conditions before you leave. Road condition information is available from the Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) 24/7 by calling 511 or going to www.511Virginia.gov
- Have emergency supplies in your vehicle. If you are stranded you will need water, food, blankets, flashlight and extra batteries at a minimum.
- Avoid overexertion while shoveling snow and cleaning up from the storm, no matter your age or physical condition. Shoveling snow or pushing a car can bring on a heart attack or make other medical conditions worse.
Additional information, including a video on making sure you and your vehicle are ready for the snow, can be found on a blog post from this past Friday.