- The Washington Times - Sunday, April 17, 2011

Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell declared a state of emergency Sunday after powerful weekend thunderstorms caused widespread flooding and damage and were thought to have killed at least six people in the central and southern parts of the state.

“Our thoughts and prayers are with those impacted by the storms and flooding in the commonwealth,” Mr. McDonnell, a Republican, said in a written statement. “I have declared a state of emergency to direct all possible resources towards responding to this event.”

The declaration makes available state resources to assist local response-and-recovery efforts.

Mr. McDonnell was expected to visit Gloucester County either Sunday or Monday. The governors office says there has been one reported death in Page County, two in Waynesboro, and three in Gloucester County. However, the state’s Office of the Chief Medical Examiner has yet to confirm if any was weather-related.

At least 43 deaths have been associated with the storm that swept across six Southern states.

In Northern Virginia, the storm downed trees and power lines and flooded parts of Old Town Alexandria, along the Potomac River.

Dominion Virginia Power reported on Sunday that roughly 11,260 people in Northern Virginia lost power, though most were restored by midafternoon.

A mudslide was reported in Carroll County. High wind caused significant damage in Dinwiddie, Gloucester, Halifax, Isle of Wight, James City, Lunenburg, Middlesex, Surry and Rockbridge counties, according to the governor’s office. However, the National Weather Service has not confirmed reports of tornadoes.

Much of the flash and stream flooding had receded by Sunday, but river flooding is expected through Monday. Officials say moderate to major flooding will occur on the north and south forks of the Shenandoah River. And flood conditions are also forecast for the Rappahannock and Shenandoah rivers.

• Joseph Weber can be reached at jweber@washingtontimes.com.old.

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