Virginia National Guard stands ready for weekend storm

Virginia National Guard Soldiers assigned to the Powhatan-based 180th Engineer Company, 276th...
Virginia National Guard Soldiers assigned to the Powhatan-based 180th Engineer Company, 276th Engineer Battalion, 329th Regional Support Group clear trees along a power line route to help with electricity restoration efforts Jan. 8, 2022, in Louisa County, Virginia. After confirmation the power lines on the route were not active, Soldiers used chain saws to clear trees so Rappahannock Electric Cooperative crews could rehang the lines to help restore power in the area. Read more about VNG winter weather response operations at at https://go.usa.gov/xtY3H. (U.S. National Guard photo by Cotton Puryear)(Virginia National Guard)
Published: Jan. 14, 2022 at 2:47 PM EST
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RICHMOND, Va. (WDBJ/VA National Guard Release) - The Virginia National Guard has alerted personnel for possible winter storm response operations, and plans to stage about 60 soldiers in key locations along the I-81 and Route 460 corridors ahead of an expected heavy snowstorm 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, VNG 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.”

The Virginia Department of Emergency Management requested high mobility transportation and debris reduction capabilities, so the VNG is staging three teams of 20 soldiers with heavy duty tactical vehicles capable of traveling through deep snow and chain saws for reducing debris from fallen trees.

Virginia Governor Northam’s emergency declaration Friday afternoon authorized the VNG to put personnel on active duty to support state and local authorities in advance of possible severe winter weather.

Typical missions for the VNG during snow response operations are transporting first responders or distributing food and water to people in remote areas, as well as providing chainsaw teams to help reduce debris to clear roads or power line routes, according to the National Guard.

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