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Northam declares state of emergency because of incoming storm

Gov. Ralph Northam said the state expected a winter storm to have a significant impact on many parts of Virginia.

RICHMOND, Va. — Gov. Ralph Northam declared a state of emergency for Virginia Friday, anticipating a winter storm that forecasters expected to move into Virginia Saturday.

The National Weather Service (NWS) said it expected to see significant snow, sleet, and ice late Saturday night through Monday, impacting a majority of the state. NWS said some areas in Southwest Virginia could get up to a foot of snow.

“We expect this storm to have a significant impact in many parts of Virginia,” Northam said. “Declaring a state of emergency now allows our emergency responders to prepare, and to move supplies and equipment where they expect to need them the most. This also gives Governor-elect Youngkin the ability to respond to any storm needs swiftly. I urge Virginians to take this storm seriously and make preparations now.”

Northam and state emergency officials conducted a joint preparation call Friday with Governor-elect Glenn Youngkin and his team. Youngkin is scheduled to take his oath of office at 12:05 p.m. Saturday.

The Virginia Emergency Operations Center has been monitoring the movement of the weather system which approached as parts of Virginia still dealt with the consequences of winter weather that hit them during the first week of January.

In Northern Virginia, a large stretch of Interstate 95 was shutdown for more than 24 hours, beginning on Jan. 3.

The current system likely will bring additional downed trees and more electrical outages. It also might impact travel conditions significantly.

The emergency declaration for Virginia can be found here.

Gov. Roy Cooper declared a state of emergency for  North Carolina, as well.