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This photo released by the Central Vermont Public Service utility shows the washed out Route 4 in Mendon, Vt., Monday, Aug. 29, 2011, after the adjacent Mendon Brook overflowed when Tropical Storm Irene passed through Vermont Sunday. (AP photo/Central Vermont Public Service)
The flood-ravaged state of Vermont will soon be getting help from a southern neighbor.
The Virginia National Guard troops from the 157th Engineer platoon in Fort Pickett and the 3647th Maintenance Company out of Blackstone will travel north on September 6 to assist in Vermont's disaster recovery. In total, approximately 25 soldiers and 6 20-ton dump trucks will take part in the mission, which could last a month.
"When a state needs additional capability to assist in a time of need, they can reach out to other states to provide that capability," said Major General Daniel E. Long Jr., Adjutant General of Virginia. "We are glad to be able to assist the citizens of Vermont with their clean up effort. I am sure they would do the same thing for us.”
The Virginia National Guards' last out-of-state mission was last year when personnel assisted with flood recovery in West Virginia. General Long said that while the soldiers are away, Virginia will still have plenty of capacity to respond to any in-state disasters.
Earlier in the week, 70,000 residents in Vermont were without power following the passing of Tropical Storm Irene. The National Weather Service predicts the state could get 4 more inches of rain over the coming days, threatening more flash flooding. Gov. Peter Shumlin expressed concern that hastily repaired roads and bridges might be vulnerable.