Georgia officials prepare for snow, ice this weekend

Georgia News

ATLANTA (WSAV) – Georgia is bracing for the possibility of snow and ice this weekend as a winter storm system moves across the U.S.

Friday night, Gov. Brian Kemp announced a state of emergency declaration for over half of the state’s counties, freeing up resources for affected areas.

“We are mobilizing resources to protect our state but also be ready to assist neighboring states,” said Kemp earlier in the day. Alabama and the Carolinas could see a wintry mix too.

State officials said one of their biggest concerns is the northeast Georgia mountains, where snowfall could reach up to 8 inches. A winter storm watch has already been issued through Sunday for some areas.

Metro Atlanta could see up to an inch of snow and some ice on Monday, Georgia Emergency Management and Homeland Security Agency Director James Stallings advised.

“A mix of rain, sleet and snow and freezing will continue Sunday afternoon through Sunday evening,” Stallings said.

It’s also expected to be a busy travel weekend, with some employees off for Martin Luther King Jr. Day Monday. And for those heading to UGA’s national championship parade Saturday, Gov. Brian Kemp said it’ll be best to get back home quickly or stay in Athens until Monday.

The Georgia Department of Transportation is already preparing.

Commissioner Russell McMurry said it’s all hands on deck as his department is pre-treats 19,500 miles of road from Columbus to Augusta and everything north of them. Saturday evening, McMurry expects operations to switch to plowing and spreading salt and gravel.

He reminded Georgians that with the potential for downed trees and power lines, GDOT services could face delays.

Meanwhile, officials at Georgia Power said their teams are ready to work around the clock in case of power outages.

In general, state officials urge residents and visitors to stay weather aware. If possible, stay home and off of the streets on Sunday into Monday.

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