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Governor declares state of emergency

RICHMOND—Gov. Bob McDonnell on Wednesday declared a state of emergency for potential impact from Hurricane Earl.

According to the National Weather Service, tropical storm conditions “are possible” in Western Tidewater Thursday night. However, at this point only a slight chance of showers and light winds are expected.

At 11 a.m. Wednesday, Earl was a Category 3 hurricane with winds of up to 125 mph. The storm was located about 725 miles southeast of Cape Hatteras, N.C.

“The current forecast has Hurricane Earl passing east of Virginia later this week. However, a change in the storm’s path could bring hazardous weather conditions to eastern Virginia,” McDonnell said. “This declaration is a precautionary move which will allow state agencies to be ready just in case resources are needed.”

Under state law, a state of emergency must be declared so that additional resources are available and positioned for use if necessary.

The Virginia Department of Emergency Management is holding conference calls with the National Weather Service, local governments and state agencies. The Virginia National Guard is also preparing for possible post-storm response in the Hampton Roads area.