MONTGOMERY - Governor Bob Riley on Friday afternoon declared a state of emergency for Alabama after he received new information from the U.S. Department of Energy that energy shortages will likely occur in the state due to Hurricane Ike.
The Governor's declaration notes that "disruption of essential utility services, systems and severe energy shortages will likely occur."
Earlier in the day, the Governor's Office noted that an Alabama governor's ability to declare a state of emergency was very limited. By law, an Alabama governor cannot declare a state of emergency unless there has been or there is anticipated to be an attack on the United States, a natural disaster of major proportions impacting Alabama or a public health emergency.
"I believe this new information means a threat to public health is a strong possibility due to the shortage of fuels," said Governor Riley. "I deem it an emergency."