WESTMORELAND COUNTY, Va. -- While rain started in Virginia on Monday evening, the brunt of Hurricane Isaias is expected to move into the state early Tuesday morning, bringing strong wind gusts and storm surge to coastal areas, and heavy rain to Central Virginia.
Jason Elmore with The Virginia Department of Emergency Management said the storm is tracking toward the west, which could mean significant rainfall for Central Virginia.
“With the storm being fairly quick-moving, it’s going to put down a lot of rain in a short amount of time so the issues are going to be flash flooding,” Elmore said. “Many localities have specific areas they know that are prone to flooding.”
VDEM said strong wind gusts could cause power outages, while a saturated ground could lead to downed trees. On Monday, Dominion Virginia Power crews began mobilizing while tree companies stayed busy with storm preparations.
40 National Guard soldiers were also mobilized to areas along the Eastern Shore. Governor Ralph Northam said Virginians need to be prepared, especially with the hurricane happening during a pandemic.
“If there are areas where people need to go to a shelter, we obviously need to keep in mind that we all need to have facial protection on and we need to keep our distancing,” Northam said. “We’ve made modifications to prepare Virginia for these measures in the midst of a pandemic.”
Besides non-perishable food, water, batteries, flashlights, and needed medication, emergency officials are asking residents to expand their emergency kits this year.
“You have to look on the health side of things," Elmore said. “Having face covering, hand sanitizer, antibacterial soap and disinfectant wipes and those types of things in your emergency kits.”
This weekend, Virginians can purchase storm-related materials, along with school supplies, during the tax-free holiday.