State of emergency declared ahead of Dorian

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RICHMOND, Va. (CBS19 NEWS) -- Governor Ralph Northam has declared a state of emergency ahead of Hurricane Dorian's arrival in the continental United States.

The storm is expected to begin impacting southeastern Virginia on Thursday, particularly with coastal and inland flooding, storm surge, damaging winds, and prolonged power outages.

"Hurricane Dorian is a serious storm, and current predictions indicate that it may affect parts of Virginia," said Northam. "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 impact from Hurricane Dorian. I encourage Virginians to take all necessary precautions to make sure they are prepared as well."

A state of emergency means the Commonwealth can mobilize resources and deploy people and equipment to help in response and recovery efforts.

It will also allow officials to coordinate planning and evacuation resources with the state of North Carolina.

Among the state agencies that are working together in preparation for the storm are the Department of Emergency Management, the Virginia State Police, Department of Transportation, Virginia National Guard, Department of Social Services, Department of Health, Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, and others.

On Monday morning, the Virginia Emergency Operations Center was also activated to monitor the storm and coordinate efforts to prepare with local, state and federal officials.

For Virginians living in or visiting the coastal areas, they should know their evacuation zone, which can be checked by clicking on the link in the Related Links box or by calling 211.

For those in areas that are not pre-identified as evacuation zones, they will need to listen to evacuation orders from local and state emergency agencies.

For more information on emergency supply kits and hurricane preparedness, click on the links in the Related Links box.

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