Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell asks for federal help after deadly storms

Onlookers survey the damage in Glade Spring, Va. after storms ravaged parts of Virginia. (Photo: John Shepelwich/Appalachian Power)

As parts of the Commonwealth continue to sift through the damage from Wednesday's deadly storms, Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell is asking the federal government for help.

McDonnell has asked President Barack Obama for a federal disaster declaration to assist in Virginia's response to the tornadoes that struck Washington and Halifax Counties.

Five people died and 50 were injured during the storms.

"Yesterday, I saw firsthand the incredible destruction the tornado brought to Washington County. I spoke with those who lost loved ones and heard stories of amazing survival," Gov. McDonnell said in a statement.

McDonnell specifically asked for individual assistance and Small Business Administration disaster loans for the two counties most affected by the storm.

The strength of Virginia is evident in the volunteers and charitable organizations who are already working to get the community on the road to recovery," McDonnell said.

"That road will be a long and hard one, and I have asked for federal disaster assistance to help our citizens in their recovery."