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Virginia National Guard preparing for winter storm; plans to stage 60 soldiers

Sunday’s winter storm is predicted to bring some areas the most snow in nearly three years

VNG Soldiers clear trees to help with power restoration in Louisa County during a recent snow response. (Virginia Guard Public Affairs)

RICHMOND, Va. – The Virginia National Guard says preparation is underway ahead of a winter storm that could give some areas in the Commonwealth the most snow they’ve seen in nearly three years.

On Friday, the National Guard announced that it has already contacted personnel regarding possible winter storm response operations and says it plans to stage about 60 soldiers in key locations along I-81 and Route 460. Staging will be broken up into three teams of 20 soldiers who will have heavy-duty tactical vehicles that can drive in deep snow.

Personnel will start missions on Saturday afternoon, prior to Sunday’s storm. Those missions will include transporting first responders or distributing food and water to individuals who live in secluded areas. It also consists of a chain saw team that is set to help get rid of debris and clear roads or power line routes.

[Strong winter storm to bring mixed bag of snow, sleet, freezing rain to Virginia Sunday]

“When we have advanced notice of possible severe weather, it enables us to stage personnel at key locations for a more rapid response,” said Brig. Gen. James W. Ring, Virginia National Guard Director of the Joint Staff. “We appreciate our personnel being willing to leave their loved ones and their jobs on very short notice to help their fellow Virginians in times of need. We thank the families and employers for their continued support.”

This announcement came around the same time Virginia Governor Ralph Northam declared a state of emergency, authorizing the national guard to bring personnel on state active duty to support state and local authorities in advance of possible severe winter weather.

About the Author:

Jazmine Otey joined the 10 News team in February 2021.