North Carolina Governor expands State of Emergency in response to ongoing wildfires
RALEIGH, N.C. (FOX Carolina) - North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper announced that he extended a State of Emergency declared earlier this month in response to the wildfires impacting Western North Carolina.
“I am grateful for the firefighters and first responders who continue to work tirelessly to combat the fires in the western part of our state,” said Governor Cooper. “We remain in touch with local officials to provide assistance where necessary and address the health and safety risks posed by these fires.”
The State of Emergency was first declared on November 8. Officials explained that the State of Emergency was also in response to the drought conditions and elevated fire risk throughout the state.
“The expanded state of emergency will continue to extend support to local jurisdictions and partner agencies impacted by the ongoing wildfires with the resources they need,” said Will Ray, Director of North Carolina Emergency Management. “We ask that all North Carolinians do their part by following guidance from North Carolina Forest Service and public safety officials for wildfire safety, especially while these drought conditions continue. If we all do our part to prevent wildfires, and other preventable disasters, we will be protecting our communities and the first responders who work in them.”
According to officials, Cooper’s new Executive Order will expand the State of Emergency to include Anson, Caswell, Davidson, Davie, Forsyth, Guilford, Montgomery, Moore, Randolph, Richmond, Rockingham, Scotland, Stanly, Stokes, Surry and Yadkin counties. They added that the Executive Order will help coordinate and support the emergency response operations happening among organizations in North Carolina.
The State of Emergency already covers Alexander, Alleghany, Ashe, Avery, Buncombe, Burke, Cabarrus, Caldwell, Catawba, Cherokee, Clay, Cleveland, Gaston, Graham, Haywood, Henderson, Iredell, Jackson, Lincoln, Macon, Madison, McDowell, Mecklenburg, Mitchell, Polk, Rowan, Rutherford, Swain, Transylvania, Union, Watauga, Wilkes and Yancey counties as well as tribal lands in the State of North Carolina held by the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians.
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