(The following press release from the Virginia Governor's Office was
received by e-mail and was reformatted. The sender verified the statement.)
Commonwealth of Virginia
Office of Governor Bob McDonnell
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
October 30, 2012
Governor McDonnell Updates Virginia’s Recovery from Hurricane Sandy
Storm Largely Spares Commonwealth; 114,000 Customers Still Without Power,
Mostly in Northern Virginia
RICHMOND - During an afternoon press conference in Richmond, Governor Bob
McDonnell updated Virginia’s continued recovery from the impacts of Hurricane
Sandy. The large storm began affecting portions of the Commonwealth late
Saturday, and snow and rain associated with the system continue in parts of the
state. During the storm, winds gusted to 60mph in both Roanoke and Arlington
and to 68 mph at Wallops Island, nearly 10 inches of rain was recorded in the
Pungo area of Virginia Beach and on the Northern Neck, and 8.5 inches of snow
fell in Tazewell, with reports of higher amounts in many elevated areas of
western and southwestern Virginia. In addition, high water led to the National
Guard transporting citizens to shelters on the Eastern Shore. Sadly, the storm
was responsible for two fatalities in Central Virginia.
Despite those figures, Sandy’s impact in the Commonwealth was far less than
originally anticipated. As of 1pm today, power outages are down to 114,000
customers statewide, which is a much smaller number than expected. Most regions
of the Commonwealth, outside of mountain areas experiencing lingering snow,
will see weather conditions quickly returning to normal over the days ahead.
Based on current conditions and what is anticipated for the aftermath of the
storm, the Commonwealth is in a position to offer assistance to states that
suffered far more damage. Today, Governor McDonnell spoke with President Obama
to offer Virginia resources to ongoing recovery efforts in New Jersey, New York
and other states. He has also personally communicated that offer to Governor
Chris Christie in New Jersey and Governor Andrew Cuomo in New York. In
addition, offers of assistance have been made to Connecticut and Delaware.
Speaking about the now-ending storm in the Commonwealth, Governor McDonnell
remarked, “I sincerely appreciate the cooperation we have seen from Virginians
in every part of the state as we have gone through this severe weather event.
Sandy was not as bad as we expected, but we still faced high winds, heavy rain
and snow, and flooding. Virginians worked together to get through this storm,
and looked out for one another. I thank our citizens for their efforts and
their incredible generosity of spirit. I also want to, once again, thank our
first responders, state agencies, local governments, private partners and
volunteers for the tremendous work they have done. There is still clean up to
be done and we need to get power restored to the over 110,000 customers without
it. We will get that done. Virginia stands ready to help other states as they
recover from a far more serious and destructive storm within their borders.”
Federal Disaster Declaration
Governor McDonnell requested and Virginia has been awarded a federal disaster
declaration to support emergency response efforts. Specifically, FEMA is
authorized to deploy federal resources if needed by local and state officials.
Virginia may request federal Public Assistance after damage assessments are
compiled. It is too early to know if Virginia would qualify for federal
Two storm-related traffic fatalities have been confirmed by the Office of the
Chief Medical Examiner. The deaths occurred in the central region of the
state. No other storm-related deaths have been reported.
At 1 p.m., reported power outages were at 114,000 statewide. Virginia Dominion
Power expects all power to be restored by Thursday night.
Extensions for State Permits, Fees and Licenses
Governor McDonnell signed Executive Order No. 53: Declaration of a State of
Emergency for the Commonwealth of Virginia Due to the Threat of Hurricane Sandy
Impacting Virginia. Included in the Executive Order is a request that the
Department of Motor Vehicles and other executive branch agencies, as deemed
appropriate in their discretion, waive any late fees associated with October
registrations, licenses, permits, or credential renewals that are submitted on
or before November 9, 2012. You can download the entire Executive order here.
Current Travel Conditions
More than 280 roads, mostly secondary roads, are closed due to flooding and
downed trees in northern Virginia, northern Shenandoah Valley, and the Eastern
Interstate routes in southwestern Virginia have scattered snow and ice patches.
Many primary and secondary roads in southwest Virginia are snow covered or
have snow and ice patches.
In northern Virginia, about 100 signals are not functioning. Drivers should
treat these intersections as four-way stops. HOV restrictions have been lifted
on interstates 66, 95, 395 and the Dulles Toll Road.
In Hampton Roads, all tunnels, water crossings, interstate highways and primary
roads are open in most areas. Two severely impacted areas include Accomack and
Northampton counties. In these areas, several secondary roads remain closed due
to storm surge flooding and downed trees.
HOV restrictions are lifted in Northern Virginia
DC Metro services: Metrorail service restoration began at 2 p.m. On all lines,
trains will operate at Sunday service intervals until closing.
Metrobus: Service restoration began at 2 p.m. Buses will operate on a Sunday
schedule on Tuesday. Certain bus routes that do not operate on Sundays will
resume service on a weekday schedule.
The State Board of Elections has asked local electoral boards in localities
impacted by Hurricane Sandy to extend absentee voting hours over the course of
the remaining absentee period that ends on Saturday, Nov. 3, 2012. Please
check local general registrar offices’ websites or call ahead to determine the
hours of operations in specific localities. You may also visit the State Board
of Elections Facebook page for updated information at
To be eligible to vote absentee, it is necessary to be registered to vote and
meet one of the 19 qualifying absentee reasons. Please remember to bring an
acceptable form of identification to the voter registration office if planning
to vote absentee.
How to Help
The Governor encourages Virginians wishing to help out in this difficult time
to consider a donation to the Virginia Disaster Relief Fund (VDRF) or the
American Red Cross Disaster Fund (ARCF). All money donated assists Virginians
who are affected by disasters. For more about these two disaster funds, visit:
9 shelters and 4 heating shelters are open in 13 localities with 122 people.
The best source for local shelter information is local government officials and
local media reports. As of 10 a.m., these localities have open shelters:
New Kent County
Tazewell County – 4 Heating Shelters (No overnight accommodations, shelters are
for relief from the cold.)
Virginia Rescue Efforts
Virginia State Police – state troopers and dispatchers have fielded 5,098 calls
for service as a result of the high winds, heavy rains, and snowfall associated
with the Hurricane Sandy storm system. Statewide between 12:01 a.m. Sunday
(Oct. 28, 2012) and 10 a.m. Tuesday (Oct. 30, 2012), Virginia troopers
responded to 583 traffic crashes and 690 disabled vehicles. The majority of the
storm-related crashes occurred in the Hampton Roads, Tidewater, Southside, and
Northern Virginia regions. At the height of the storm Monday, state police were
fielding 155 calls for service per hour.
Virginia National Guard – Approximately 630 Virginia National Guard personnel
are staged on the Eastern Shore, in Hampton Roads, along the Interstate 95
corridor from Richmond to northern Virginia, and along the I-81/I-66 corridor
from Woodstock to Leesburg ready to assist with high water transport, debris
reduction and reconnaissance patrols. Some of their accomplishments include:
· In Winchester, VNG assisted Virginia State Police with clearing a
large tree blocking access to a VSP fueling station
· In Norfolk, VNG provided high water transport to assist local
firefighters transporting a citizen to shelter.
· In Onancock, VNG conducted multiple missions to transport 14 citizens
to shelters and transported six firefighters.
Virginia Department of Health issued an emergency closure of shellfish
harvesting areas in the Virginia portion of the Chesapeake Bay and west of and
including the Virginia Inside Passage of the Eastern Shore due to tidal
flooding and excessive rainfall. Maps of the affected areas are posted on the
Division of Shellfish Sanitation’s home page at
www.vdh.virginia.gov/Shellfish/. The affected shellfish are bivalve mollusks
including oysters and clams, but not crabs or fin fish.
For Additional Questions and More Post-Storm Information
2-1-1 Virginia is serving as the public inquiry number for Virginia residents.
5-1-1 - Call toll-free for the latest in road conditions and closures; or visit
People can use VDOT’s Customer Service Center hotline to report road issues
such as debris in the road and potholes: 1-800-FOR-ROAD (1-800-367-7623).
Dial #77 on a cell phone to report a traffic crash or traffic emergency.
Residents should call their locality’s non-emergency number for updated
storm-related and shelter information. Call 9-1-1 only in a true emergency.
Office of the Governor
Contact: Jeff Caldwell
Phone: (804) 225-4260
Department of Emergency Management
Contact: Bob Spieldenner
Phone: (804) 674-2400
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