Mayor Kasim Reed continues to urge Atlantans to stay off the roads; cautions drivers who must go outside to use extreme caution and slow down
Mayor Kasim Reed on Monday continued to urge Atlanta residents and business owners to put their safety first and remain at home due to snow and icy road conditions, which are likely to remain for the next several days due to below freezing temperatures. City of Atlanta crews, including Public Works, Watershed Management, and Parks will be working around the clock to make all city streets accessible as soon as possible.
“Last night, the City of Atlanta experienced a significant snowstorm with rapid accumulation and freezing rain, and we continue to experience below-freezing temperatures,” Mayor Reed said. “This is a very dangerous combination, and I ask that Atlanta residents to stay off the roads, or at least drive at reduced speeds if they must go outside.”
On Sunday evening, Mayor Reed joined Governor Sonny Perdue in calling for a state of emergency in the City of Atlanta. Throughout the night, Mayor Reed and his senior staff monitored weather, traffic and police, fire-rescue and public works operations at the City of Atlanta’s Joint Operations Command Center, which opened at 7 p.m. Sunday and will remain in service for 24-hours per day through the duration of this weather event.
The Command Center allows city personnel to work together in one central location and coordinate emergency response activities across all city departments and other municipal agencies. The City of Atlanta also is open for business today.
The City of Atlanta’s Department of Public Works is working on road safety and accessibility as its number one priority. The city’s goal is to maintain access in the immediate vicinity of emergency facilities such as hospitals, police and fire stations and emergency shelters; maintain a network of key, pre-selected and prioritized routes that provide reasonable access to most areas of the city; and make all city streets accessible as quickly as possible. Atlanta’s priority mission covers 200 centerline miles of roadways including 40 bridges, 6 hospitals, and 16 Police Precincts.
As of 12 noon Monday, the Department of Public Works reports the following:
· One road closure (Cascade Rd at Danforth) – A crew has been dispatched.
· De-icing material has been applied to approximately 55 bridges
· Approximately 59 miles of roadway have been treated
· Received 97 de-icing requests logged into WebEOC Master Log∙
Due to the inclement weather, solid waste collections are delayed. The Department of Public Works will begin collection of routes as road conditions improve. All garbage, recycling, and yard trimmings routes are expected to be collected throughout the City by Friday, January 14, 2010.
The City of Atlanta is asking residents, if possible, to not park on the following main thoroughfares to assist with plowing operations: 14th Street, 17thStreet, International Boulevard, Marietta Boulevard, Marietta Street, Martin Luther King Drive, Northside Drive, Moreland Avenue, Peachtree Road, Peters Street, Piedmont Road, Roswell Road, Spring Street, West Peachtree Street, Whitehall Street and Williams Street.
Public Works departmental resources will be used first and then the full capabilities of the entire City of Atlanta will be deployed as needed by using assets from other departments or governments in a staged fashion, depending upon the severity of the conditions.
Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport
Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport is open, although more than 60 percent of flights have been canceled by the airlines due to the weather. All passengers should check with airlines prior to coming to the airport. The airport is coordinating all of our efforts in cooperation with the FAA Air Traffic Control Group.
Overnight, the airfield experienced surface snow accumulation between 3-4 inches. Runway 8L/26R, Runway 8R/26L, Runway 9L/27R and Runway 9R/27L have been plowed, swept and treated with E-36 de-ice chemical and open with braking conditions reported as good. Runway 10/28 is closed due to ice conditions on the runway and taxiway bridges.
The roads leading to the airport have been plowed, treated and are accessible. Parking is available in all lots; however, the upper decks closed. There is limited taxi and hotel shuttle service due to off airport roadway conditions.
At the terminal, the automated trains --- Plane Train and ATL Sky Train --- are running on a normal schedule without any operational impact due to weather. Airline ticket counters are open and customer service agents are assisting passengers with rebooking. Food and beverages are available on all concourses.
City of Atlanta Storm and Ice Resources
As part of the updated snow/ice plan, the City of Atlanta is deploying the following resources:
· 11 plow trucks
· 8 sand trucks
· 7 chase vehicles
· 500 tons of sand mixture
Parks and Recreation
· Two Tandems with Operators
· Pickups as needed to address park and recreation center (shelters) drives and walks
· Tree crews with dump and bucket trucks to address fallen trees
· Five Tandem Dump Trucks with Operators
· Two Flatbed Trucks with Operators
State of Georgia
· Multiple sand spreaders and other resources as needed and available (for state routes)
· Priority routes are consistent with the functional street classification hierarchy, which is based on the volume of traffic served and the connectivity provided:
· First priority routes reflect major arterial streets; (e.g. Peachtree Street, Northside Drive, and Mitchell Street)
· Second priority routes include minor arterials and collectors; (e.g. Howell Mill Road, Campbellton Road, and Monroe Drive)
· Third priority routes are comprised of minor collectors and major local streets (e.g. West Wesley, Avon Avenue, and Beecher Road)
In parallel with completing priority routes, crews will continue to canvass designated areas and respond to dispatched calls received from Police and other emergency personnel as well as reports from citizens. For reporting of ice or hazardous roadway conditions, please call 404-853-3200.
When the city is significantly impacted by weather conditions, Public Works operations will work around the clock to ensure roadways are clear and safe.
City of Atlanta Department of Parks, Recreations and Cultural Affairs
The city’s Department of Parks, Recreation and Cultural Affairs has prepared 100 beds for families in need of shelter due to power outages. At 12 noon today, the Old Adamsville Recreation Center (located at 3404 Delmar Lane SW) will open with the city's emergency shelter plan in effect and remain operational until further notice. In the event of further need for assistance, the Office of Recreation will provide limited sheltering at Rosel Fann Recreation Center (located at 365 Cleveland Avenue SE).
According to Georgia Power, there have been no reported major power outages in the City of Atlanta. However, if residents experience a loss of power, they are encouraged to do the following:
· Anyone with a life-threatening medical emergency should dial 9-1-1.
· Always avoid downed power lines. Any downed line should be considered energized and therefore dangerous. Report downed lines immediately to local public safety authorities and stay out of the immediate area.
· Avoid debris on the ground that may conceal downed power lines and make sure there are no downed lines before allowing children out to play. Do not attempt to make repairs to Georgia Power's electrical system or pull limbs off lines.
· Watch out for falling trees, tree limbs and power lines.
· Steer clear of Georgia Power crew work areas. Equipment and energized lines may be in the area that could create a safety hazard.
· When driving, watch for crews working along the roadways, and obey all traffic signs and directions around work areas.
· When leaving your home and power is off, turn off the main breaker as a precaution to avoid a power surge once the power is restored.
· Be patient. When major outages occur, Georgia Power crews must first restore power to transmission lines and distribution circuits before working on distribution lines that feed directly to homes and businesses. However, be assured that Georgia Power crews are working as quickly and safely as possible to restore power to customers.
· Customers are reminded to be careful when using portable heaters or other supplemental heating. Never place heaters near flammable materials or where they might tip over. Use fire screens to prevent sparks and embers from causing problems.
· Customers should exercise extreme caution if using candles during a power outage. Always keep candles away from flammable objects and never leave them burning unattended. Make sure flashlights have fresh batteries.
· Keep the damper close in your fireplace when not using it.
· Dress in layers.· Keep refrigerators and freezer doors closed to keep cold air inside.