Gov. Nathan Deal has declared a state of emergency for 45 counties in north Georgia that are expected to receive the biggest impacts from Pax.
With memories of thousands of vehicles gridlocked for hours on icy metro Atlanta highways fresh in their minds, emergency officials and elected leaders in north Georgia are preparing for Winter Storm Pax. Gov. Nathan Deal, who was criticized for his response to the Jan. 28 storm that paralyzed the metro area and left motorists stranded in vehicles overnight, said in a news release Sunday that he’s put emergency response agencies on alert and began significant preparations. The governor scheduled a news conference for noon Monday to discuss winter storm preparations. The National Weather Service has issued a winter weather watch from 7 p.m. Monday through 7 p.m. Tuesday and a winter storm watch from Tuesday evening through Thursday morning for the metro Atlanta area.
Even before the first snowflakes fell, people around Atlanta were planning to work from home and stay off the roads. Jay Ali, 33, a college student, said Monday morning that he planned to mostly stay indoors. He had little confidence that government officials would handle this storm any better than the last.
“New levels of incompetence,” Ali said, describing the state and regional response to the last storm that left motorists stranded in their cars for hours, sometimes overnight. “Unforeseen levels of incompetence.”
Ali said part of the problem is that Southern cities do not have as many snow plows, sanders and spreaders as Northern cities.
“I don’t think they have the infrastructure to protect themselves if a storm gets really bad,” he said.
— Shawn Reynolds (@WCL_Shawn) February 10, 2014