CHARLESTON, WV (WVNS) – Gov. Jim Justice declared a State of Preparedness for all 55 counties in the state due to the winter storm forecast to arrive this week.

The National Weather Service predicts heavy snow, freezing rains, dangerous wind chills, and strong winds beginning tomorrow, Wednesday, December 21, 2022, continuing throughout the week and into the coming holiday weekend. Governor Justice has issued the following declaration because of the National Weather Service’s prediction.

Click here to view State of Preparedness declaration

The declaration directs the State Emergency Operations Center and its partner agencies to prepare to respond to the impending winter storm, posturing personnel and resources to respond quickly should an emergency develop.

Coordinating agencies are on standby to report to the State Emergency Operations Center at the West Virginia Emergency Management Division (EMD) should the need arise. To assist emergency management officials tracking the storm’s path, the National Weather Service will hold daily briefings for state agencies and local partners, and EMD liaisons will provide updates from each county.

The EMD Watch Center has increased staffing through the weekend to perform around-the-clock monitoring of the weather system and will notify leaders if local emergency management agencies request assistance. 

“EMD monitors for any events that may threaten the citizens of West Virginia, including severe weather. We’re prepared at all times to respond should there be an emergency, even on holidays.”

EMD Director GE McCabe

Gov. Justice and the EMD are asking all West Virginians to remain attentive to weather conditions through local media reports and follow any instructions issued by emergency officials.