State Watch

Oregon declares state of emergency as area braces for winter storm

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Oregon Gov. Kate Brown (D) on Thursday declared a state of emergency as the northwest braces for severe winter weather.

“Our state has experienced a number of climate-related emergencies this year, and with another coming, I urge all Oregonians to make a plan with your family now and be prepared,” Brown said in a statement.

“I am directing state agencies to work proactively with local emergency management partners to coordinate on communications for emergency services, such as warming centers,” she added.

The northwestern U.S. is expected to be hit with freezing temperatures and above-average snowfall in the next week. By Sunday, at least an inch of snow is likely to fall in Portland, which does not regularly see snow.

That snowfall, combined with sub-zero temperatures, could pose a risk to individuals experiencing homelessness. 

At least five severe weather shelters in the city are expected to open Saturday, The Associated Press reports.  

The weather also poses a risk for transportation, communication and power infrastructure in Oregon.

Brown’s state of emergency will extend until at least Jan. 3 to ensure resources are available in the event of failures in any of those sectors.

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