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W.Va. Emergency Management Prepares for Hurricane Laura

CHARLESTON, W.Va. – West Virginia may experience severe weather over the next few days as the remnants of Hurricane Laura sweep across the state.

During the past week, as forecasts became more precise, the W. Va. Division of Emergency Management (WVEMD) and its partners began preparing to respond to this severe weather threat.

The State Emergency Operations Center (SEOC) has expanded the scope of the briefings it has been hosting while it remains on Enhanced Watch due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and the W.Va. National Guard have already been participating along with other state agencies, county emergency management offices, and such groups as Volunteer Organizations Active in Disasters (VOAD) and the Red Cross. Joining the briefings are the State Resiliency Office, for coordination of events, and the National Weather Service, for the most current severe weather forecast.

“Because of the possibility of severe weather for West Virginia due to Hurricane Laura, we’ve brought together our partner agencies and county emergency managers to be ready if response is needed,” said acting WVEMD Director Thom Kirk. “At all times, WVEMD stands ready to provide all possible resources to protect the lives and property of all our citizens. In addition to our Enhanced Watch due to COVID-19, we continue our mission by coordinating the state’s response efforts to severe weather or any other threat.”