Northam declares state of emergency as Florence approaches

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — Virginia’s governor has declared a state of emergency in anticipation of the potential impact of Tropical Storm Florence.

The order issued Saturday by Gov. Ralph Northam helps mobilize resources to prepare for the storm, mitigate any damage and streamline the process Virginia uses to send assistance to other states.

Northam said in a statement that while the impacts are still uncertain, forecasts increasingly expect the storm to strengthen into a major hurricane that could affect the East Coast, including Virginia, next week. Impacts could include flooding, high winds and a possible storm surge.

The governor is urging residents to begin preparing now by assembling an emergency kit with food, water, medication, pet supplies and important documents. Coastal residents should also check what hurricane evacuation zone they live in.

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