Gov. Justice Issues Emergency Declaration for All 55 W.Va. Counties
West Virginia Gov. Jim Justice declared a state of emergency early Saturday for all 55 counties.
According to a news release from the governor, heavy rain triggered flooding in multiple locations and is expected to continue throughout the weekend.
The release says the State Emergency Operations Center (EOC) is on enhanced watch status and will continue to monitor the situation. The EOC will be fully activated if necessary. The West Virginia National Guard has also been notified and put on stand-by for potential mobilization to assist local and county emergency agencies.
The National Weather Service (NWS) has forecast more rain for West Virginia on Saturday through Sunday night – up to half an inch in the northern part of the state before it turns to sleet and snow. About three quarters of an inch is forecast to fall in the south-central and south-eastern parts part of the state, although no new flood watches have been issued.
A flood warning also remains in effect for portions of north-central West Virginia and counties along the Ohio River.
The NWS says the Ohio River is expected to crest above flood stage at several points along the state’s border on Sunday.
The NWS reminds motorists not to drive through flooded areas as water may be deeper than it appears.
A flood warning was cancelled for the Cheat River at Rowlesburg in Preston County, where the river is expected to crest at 14 feet – 2 feet below flood stage.
There is a winter weather advisory in effect for the eastern mountains through Sunday night.