Virginia National Guard mobilizes following state of emergency

NORFOLK, Va. (WVEC) -- Almost 100 troops with the Virginia National Guard have been mobilized to assist in the state's response to heavy snow that's blanketed Hampton Roads and other parts of Virginia.

The assistance comes as part of the response to a State of Emergency that was declared by Gov. Terry McAuliffe on Wednesday.

The troops are staged at key locations in Hampton Roads. Expected missions include using Humvees and light/medium tactical trucks to provide transportation for first responders through deep snow as well as providing debris reduction teams with chainsaws to help clear roads if needed.

Additional personnel are on duty in Richmond, Sandston, and Fort Pickett, providing mission command, sustainment and public information support.

The Virginia National Guard will receive missions through the Virginia Department of Emergency Management to assist the Virginia State Police and other state and local emergency service organizations and is not able to respond to direct support requests from the public, according to Maj. Gen. Timothy P. Williams, the adjutant general of Virginia.

"If you are in a dangerous situation and need assistance, please contact your local dispatcher or call 911," Williams said in a news release. "If you let them know you need help, they will determine the most effective emergency services response for your situation. They will contact the Guard if it is appropriate for us to respond, and we will follow up as quickly as possible."

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