Searches and evacuations underway in southwest Virginia after heavy rains

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(WJHL) — Severe weather struck southwest Virginia, leading to several inches of rainfall to cause flooding and landslides in several communities.

The Hurley area of Buchanan County received enough rain to result in landslides that destroyed homes and structures, according to the Buchanan County Sheriff’s Office (BCSO).

BCSO said those affected have a shelter available at the Grundy Baptist Church at 1283 Edgewater Drive

BCSO released a statement late Monday night, saying fire, rescue and search agencies from across Virginia — including the Roanoke Valley and the Lynchburg area — and West Virginia were assisting in the area. Searches are set to resume in Buchanan County Tuesday and damage will be assessed by ground and aerial teams.

Those in the Hurley community are also under a boil water advisory until further notice, according to town officials.

Southwest Virginia Community College announced it’s collecting necessities to help those affected by the flooding.

The following items are being collected:

  • Bottled water
  • Cleaning products
  • Paper towels
  • Baby supplies: formula, diapers and non-perishable baby food
  • Pet supplies: food, collars, leashes, bowls and carriers
  • Flashlights
  • Batteries
  • Disposable masks

The Dickenson County Emergency Management Agency stated in a Facebook post that multiple stranded Hurley residents had been assisted by the agency.

The storm damaged prompted area school closures, including the following:

  • Hurley Elementary and Middle School
  • Hurley High School
  • Riverview Elementary and Middle School, which is also serving as a shelter for those who were evacuated

All other schools in Buchanan County will remain open.

Numerous first response teams have been assisting in the rescue efforts, including but not limited to the Buchanan County Sheriff’s Office, specialized teams from the Virginia Department of Emergency Management, Virginia State Police, Dickenson County Emergency Management, Haysi Fire Department, Sandy Ridge Fire Department, Clintwood Fire Department, Haysi Police Department, and rescue teams from West Virginia.

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