Virginia Beach, Virginia, will be feeling the effects of Hurricane Florence later this week, as the storm makes its way to the eastern coast of the United States. The area could receive as much as 15+ inches of rain along with sustained hurricane-force winds, depending on Florence’s track. At this time, residents in Zone A in Virginia Beach have been ordered to evacuate. As the storm approaches, officials may decide to evacuate more zones.
Florence is currently a Category 4 hurricane. The storm is expected to make landfall in North Carolina on Friday morning.
Virginia Beach Evacuation Zone, Routes & Map
Virginia Governor Ralph Northam ordered an evacuation of residents in Zone A beginning at 8 a.m. Tuesday, September 11.
“Properties in Zone A are located in areas most at risk of flooding and storm surge. Then Zone B properties. Then Zone C. And lastly, Zone D. While zones won’t always be evacuated in that order or one at a time, the zone designations are based on storm surge, flooding, and meteorological data. When a storm approaches, emergency managers at the state and local level will work with local media and use social media and other tools to notify residents of impacted zones what they should do to stay safe,” reads the Arcgis website.
If you are living in Zone A and choose not to evacuate, you won’t be issued a citation — even though ignoring a mandatory evacuation order is considered a misdemeanor crime.
“We will not be knocking on doors or seeking out people that have not adhered to the evacuation order, or issuing citations. Evacuation is a personal choice that families must make. The recommendation to evacuate was made due to the severity of the potential threat,” Virginia Beach Police Department Master Police Officer Linda Kuehn wrote in an email to WAVY.
Weather Is Expected to Deteriorate on Thursday & Worsen on Friday
Sunny skies will give way to clouds and light rain on Thursday, as Florence moves closer to the coast. Tropical storm conditions are possible on Thursday and Thursday night. The wind speed will pick up significantly throughout the day on Thursday, but the severe weather and hurricane-force winds won’t begin until Friday.
Florence is expected to be a large, slow storm dropping massive quantities of rain on already-waterlogged land, with consequences extending well beyond the coast. Far inland — where evacuees will be taking refuge — flooding and power loss are still a serious risk,” reports NPR.
Shelters Have Been Opened at Several Schools in the Area
Officials in Virginia Beach have announced that several shelters have been opened ahead of Hurricane Florence’s arrival. They are located at Kellam High School, Corporate Landing Middle School, Old Donation and the Field House, which is “medically friendly.”
“Bring your personal items, your bedding, your medication, important snacks that you may need particularly if you have a health related issue,” Dannette Smith, Director of Human Services, told WAVY.