In Virginia, Governor Glenn Youngkin declared a state of emergency in anticipation of the storm, dubbed Ophelia, which is expected to hit the state on Friday evening. Concern about the storm's arrival has already prompted some schools to close and events to be canceled, local media reported.

In his declaration, Youngkin said emergency responders would move into place in advance of the storm, which is expected to bring high surf, coastal flooding and tropical storm force winds to areas along the Chesapeake Bay and tidal areas of the Potomac River.

Tropical storm warnings are in effect for much of the area, along with storm surge warnings, the National Weather Service said.

By Friday afternoon, Ophelia was powering 60 miles per hour (96.56 km per hour) winds and was expected to reach coastal areas on Friday night, bringing rain and high winds through Saturday.

In addition to life-threatening storm surges along the coast, Ophelia could spur flooding from North Carolina to New Jersey through Sunday, the National Weather Service said.

(Reporting by Sharon Bernstein; Editing by Josie Kao)