Winter Storm News Updates for Wednesday, Feb. 12

Feb 12, 2014

Last Updated: 5:45 p.m.

Well, it's here.  And we're here.  We'll be posting news, information and announcements as they come into the WABE newsroom.  Also look for our tweets (@WABENews) and posts to our Facebook page.

Update 5:45 p.m.

Government Offices Closed Tomorrow:  decisions about which government offices will be closed tomorrow have been trickling in.  Here are the ones we have confirmed will be closing:

  • Atlanta city
  • Brookhaven city
  • Clayton County
  • Conyers city
  • Decatur city
  • DeKalb County administrative offices
  • Fulton County offices
  • Georgia (Gov. Deal signed an executive order giving state executive branch officials the "discretion" to close offices in counties under the state of emergency; this does not including those directly involved with disaster response.  Two that we know are closing are the Georgia Dept. of Education and the Georgia Dept. of Human Services.)
  • Gwinnett County
  • Marietta City Municipal Court
  • Powder Springs administrative offices
  • U.S. Veterans Administration outpatient clinics

More Schools and Colleges:  the following just announced their intentions to close on Thursday, Feb. 13:

  • Agnes Scott College
  • Bibb County Schools
  • Mercer University (all campuses; a decision about whether to close evening classes scheduled for Feb. 13 will be made tomorrow)
  • Pace Academy

Fox Theatre:  the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater performance scheduled for Thursday evening, Feb. 13, has been rescheduled to Sunday, Feb. 16, at 7:30 p.m.

Update 3:50 p.m.

Colleges and Universities Closed Tomorrow:  the following colleges and universities will be closed on Thursday, Feb. 13:

  • Brenau University
  • Clark Atlanta University
  • Clayton State University
  • Emory University
  • Georgia Gwinnett College
  • Georgia Perimeter College
  • Georgia State University
  • Georgia Tech
  • Gordon State College
  • Kennesaw State University
  • Morehouse College
  • Morehouse School of Medicine
  • Oglethorpe University
  • Southern Polytechnic State University
  • Spelman College
  • University of Georgia
  • University of North Georgia
  • University of West Georgia

Update 3: 15 p.m.

K-12 Schools Closed Tomorrow:  the following school systems will be closed on Thursday, Feb. 13:

  • Atlanta Public Schools
  • Cherokee County Schools
  • Cobb County Schools
  • City of Decatur Schools
  • Douglas County Schools (all activities canceled; Thursday, Feb. 13 through Monday, Feb. 17, are still regularly scheduled holidays)
  • Fulton County Schools
  • Gwinnett County Schools
  • Marietta City Schools

Update 2:25 p.m.

U.S. Postal Service:  the Post Office says that mail deliveries in the Atlanta area and throughout most of Georgia have been disrupted by the winter storm.  Deliveries are being made in some localities as conditions permit, but most places will not be getting mail today.

Brenau University:  Brenau will be closed on Thursday, Feb. 13.

Update 2:10 p.m.

National Weather Service:  in an update, the NWS in Peachtree City says the northern and eastern portions of central Georgia received between 0.1 inch and 0.25 inches of ice this morning.  North Georgia received several inches of snow but not much ice.  At this point they think their previous forecast is still pretty much on target, although they may modify some of their projections later this afternoon.  They did provide a new graphic of snow and ice accumulations, which is now the first slide in our slideshow.

Georgia Power:  Georgia Power is facing a major problem with power outages all along the middle of the state.  As of 1:36 this afternoon, Georgia Power reported that it had 135,722 customers without power as a result of 1,579 outages.   You can check Georgia Power's outage map online.  To report an outage, call 888-891-0938.

DeKalb County:  DeKalb has three warming centers currently open.  They are:

  • Tucker Recreation Center, 4898 LaVista Rd., Tucker, GA 30084
  • Gresham Park Recreation Center, 3113 Gresham Rd.m SE, Atlanta, GA 30316
  • DeKalb County Jail, 4415 Memorial Drive, Decatur, GA 30032

Atlanta:  Hands On Atlanta is looking for volunteers to work with the City of Atlanta to "deploy emergency assistance to shelters throughout the city."  There are some additional details and restrictions:

Volunteers located within the city limits will be transported to and from shelters by first responders in winterized vehicles. Volunteers must be able to stay overnight possibly until Friday, February 14. 

Volunteers must be at least 21 years of age. Court-ordered volunteers are not accepted. 

To volunteer, contact Amy Phuong at 404.323.9470, or email her at aphuong@AtlantaGa.Gov

Update 1:20 p.m.

Georgia Tech Basketball:  Tech has postponed tonight's scheduled men's basketball game against Boston College.  The game has been rescheduled for Thursday night, Feb. 13.  In addition, the Georgia Tech women's basketball game that had been scheduled for 7:00 p.m. Thursday night has now been rescheduled to Friday night, Feb. 14.

GDOT:  GDOT is urging motorists not to mistake the slackening pace of precipitation as a sign than this -storm is over.  It isn't, and GDOT urges people to stay off the roads unless absolutely necessary.  GDOT is working primarily on the interstates to make them passable.  They have nearly 700 personnel and more than 360 trucks equipped with snow plows and/or salt-gravel mixture spreaders on duty; some 75 trucks working in the Metropolitan Atlanta area alone. 

Update 12:45 p.m.

DeKalb County Schools:  all schools will be closed Thursday, Feb. 13.

List of closed roads in DeKalb County, as of noon Wednesday.
Credit DeKalb County

DeKalb County:  the latest report on road closings in DeKalb, as of noon, has been released and is posted to the right.

Morehouse College:  Morehouse will be closed Thursday, Feb. 13.  All activities, including the Founder's Day Crown Forum and the White House/Morehouse College Black Male Forum, have been postponed and will be rescheduled.

Atlanta:  City of Atlanta offices will be closed Thursday, Feb. 13.

Update 11:40 a.m.

Georgia Tech:  Tech will be closed tomorrow, Feb. 13.

Atlanta:  the City of Atlanta has posted a good list of shelters, emergency resources, and contact number for downed trees and other emergency needs.

Atlanta:  the City Parks and Recreation Department says that all parks and related facilities will be closed Thursday, Feb. 13.

Fulton County:  Fulton Co. has opened two new warming centers to help residents and motorists.  They are at the Helene S. Mills Senior Multipurpose Facility, 515 Johns Wesley Dobbs Avenue, and the Harriett G. Darnell Senior Multipurpose Facility, 677 Fairburn Road.  This is in addition to these nine county fire stations:

  • Fire Station #1 - 5165 Welcome All Road, College Park, GA 30349
  • Fire Station #3 - 4035 Stonewall Tell Road, College Park, GA 30349
  • Fire Station #5 - 3175 Bethsaida Road, Fairburn, GA 30213
  • Fire Station #7 - 5965 Buffington Road, College Park, GA 30349
  • Fire Station #11 - 4760 Fulton Industrial Blvd., Atlanta, GA 30336
  • Fire Station #13 - 5890 Plummer Road, Atlanta, GA 30336
  • Fire Station #17 - 8675 Ridge Road, Fairburn, GA 30213
  • Fire Station #19 - 3965 Aero Drive, Atlanta, GA 30336
  • Fire Station # 23 – 4121 Cascade Road SW, Atlanta, GA 30331

Ice Accumulation:  Here are two maps of the Southeast generated using the Sperry-Piltz Ice Accumulation Index, based on National Weather Service data and showing the levels of ice to expect.  Click here for an explanation of what the levels of accumulation mean in terms of damage.

A map of ice accumulation levels in the Southeast.
Credit SPIA Index
Total ice forecast for the Southeastern U.S. through 7 PM Thursday, Feb. 13 (in inches).
Credit SPIA Index

Update 10:30 a.m.

DeKalb Co. road closures as of 10:20 a.m. today.
Credit DeKalb County

DeKalb County:  DeKalb just released its latest list of road closures.  As you might expect, the list is getting longer.

Georgia Red Cross:  the Red Cross is urging everyone to "shelter in place" until the winter storm passes.  They are working with local partner agencies to open and supply shelters to help people withstand the weather. You can find their complete statement here.

Georgia DOT:  Early this morning, the Georgia Dept. of Transportation released a statement (PDF) on road conditions in Northeast Georgia, which we have posted.  They have not released anything since.

Update 9:55 a.m.

GEMA:  GEMA has put together an online interactive map of the locations of many shelters statewide (see screenshot below).  You can take a closer look by clicking on this link.  In addition, GEMA has released a more complete list of shelters around the state arranged by county, which we have posted.

The locations of shelters are shown on this interactive map developed by GEMA.
Credit GEMA

DeKalb County:  DeKalb Co. Emergency Management says that two additional warming centers will open today, Feb. 12, at noon for those that need a temporary reprieve from the current weather conditions.  The two locations are at the Tucker Recreation Center, 4898 LaVista Rd, Tucker, GA 30084, and the Gresham Park Recreation Center, 3113 Gresham Rd SE, Atlanta, GA 30316.  This is in addition to the warming center at the DeKalb County Jail at 4415 Memorial Drive, Decatur, GA 30032, which is already available.  DeKalb does not have any overnight shelters available at this time.

Update 9:25 a.m.

Brookwood:  the City of Brookwood reports that roads in that area were in good condition until about 6:00 a.m. this morning, when it began sleeting more heavily.  So far there have not been any power outages or downed trees.  The city is now concentrating on what it calls priority one roads.  These are:

  • All Bridges
  • Peachtree Road
  • Buford Highway NE
  • Clairmont Road NE
  • North Druid Hills Road NE
  • Ashford Dunwoody Road
  • Johnson Ferry Road
  • Dresden Drive
  • East Roxboro Road
  • Perimeter Summit Boulevard

In addition, Brookwood has opened three warming shelters.  They are the Brookhaven Police Department, DeKalb Fire Station #2 and the Cowart Family/ Ashford Dunwoody YMCA.

Dunwoody:  Brookwood is reporting that the City of Dunwoody has closed the Perimeter Center Parkway Bridge over I-285.

Circus:  the Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey Circus performance scheduled for tonight at Philips Arena has been canceled.

Update 8:45 a.m.

National Weather Service:  NWS is projecting three to five inches of snow with about a quarter-inch of ice if you live north of a line from Cedartown to the northern half of the Atlanta metro area to Jefferson.  Ice can be expected south of that line, with accumulations of between one-tenth and one-quarter inch.  East of Atlanta, along the I-20 corridor, much more ice is expected -- as much as three-quarters of an inch to over an inch.  Combined with 10-20 m.p.h. winds with gusts up to 30 m.p.h., the danger of extensive and lengthy power outages is severe. 

DeKalb Co. road closings as of 8:15 a.m. today.
Credit DeKalb County

DeKalb County:  We have an updated list of road closings in DeKalb (right)

Georgia 511:  Fallen limbs are blocking the exit ramp from I-285 North to I-20 East.  Crews are working to clear the debris.

Rabun County:  a listener in Rabun County sent in some pictures of the snow there, reporting that they had already received four inches of snow before the second wave of the storm began.  You can see the pictures in the slide show at the top of this post.

Update 8:10 a.m.

Georgia 511:  a jackknifed tractor trailer is blocking two lanes (out of four) on I-285 East near Flat Shoals Road.

GEMA:  GEMA wants to remind everyone that conditions on the roads are only going to get worse and strongly urges everyone to stay home and off the roads.  Ninety-one counties remain under a state of emergency in the state.  GEMA is currently at its highest level of readiness.  A federal coordination officer has been assigned to work with GEMA to integrate federal assistance with what the state is doing.  In addition, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has a power generation team working with GEMA to address power issues.

Update 7:50 a.m.

Road closings in DeKalb County as of 6:45 a.m. this morning.
Credit DeKalb County

DeKalb County:  DeKalb sent out a list of road closings, which you can see to the right.  We will continue to post these throughout the day.

Hartsfield-Jackson Airport:  Jim Burress reports that the airport says over two-thirds of its flights have been canceled, including 1,600 by Delta alone.  Hartsfield-Jackson says it has 100,000 gallons of de-icing fluid, 50,000 pounds of de-icing pellets, and 50,000 pounds of a sand/salt mix on hand.