Virginia latest to declare state of emergency as Hurricane Dorian approaches

Virginia latest to declare state of emergency as Hurricane Dorian approaches
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Virginia on Monday became the most recent state to declare a state of emergency as Florida and the Southeast United States braces for Hurricane Dorian.

Dorian, classified as a category 5 hurricane Sunday but downgraded to Category 4 on Monday, is over the Bahamas and predicted to first hit Florida early Tuesday before turning North.

Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam (D) declared the state of emergency Monday as the hurricane is expected to hit the southeast portion of the state Thursday.

“I am declaring a state of emergency to ensure that localities and communities have the appropriate level of assistance, and to coordinate the Commonwealth’s response to any potential impacts from Hurricane Dorian,” Northam said. “I encourage Virginians to take all necessary precautions to make sure they are prepared as well.” 

Parts of Virginia could see coastal and inland flooding, high winds and extended power outages as a result of Dorian.

A state of emergency gives Virginia the ability to better deploy resources and people to combat the hurricane as well as provide equipment to assist in response and recovery efforts.

A state of emergency has already been declared in Florida, Georgia, South and North Carolina ahead of the hurricane's landfall.

Portions of Florida's eastern coast are under a hurricane watch and a tropical storm warning as the state prepares for the impacts of the storm.