The National Weather Service has issued a Winter Storm Warning for much of the Southern United States and Eastern United States in anticipation of a line of snow and ice extending from Texas to the Atlantic Coast. It was expected to hit early Tuesday morning. A secondary front is expected between Tuesday and Wednesday, bringing the possibility of additional ice and snow. Meteorologist predict the storm will produce an ice and snow mixture just north of Birmingham, and snow and ice northwards from there along I-20 through Northern Georgia.Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal expected the ice to accumulate along Atlanta’s roadways, particularly the interstates systems surrounding the city. Deal asked truckers to avoid these areas during the storm to prevent the traffic snarls and wrecked vehicles the city dealt with during the previous southern bout with winter weather in January.
These same storm systems made their way up the eastern half of the country, and left hundreds of thousands of Pennsylvania power customers in the dark. Many officials in Alabama and Georgia were embarrassed by their lack of preparations for the January 28 winter event, and want to get a jump on preparations and preventative strategies before this round of storms hits.
Birmingham and Atlanta departments of transportation, along with police, fire, and other first responders, spent most of Monday gearing up for the events expected Tuesday and Wednesday. Governor Robert Bentley of Alabama issued a State of Emergency there so that emergency preparations could proceed unimpeded.
As of Tuesday morning, it appeared much of the Birmingham metro areas were spared from the ice and snow, and instead were drenched with cold rains. Warmer temperatures also kept Atlanta in the clear early Tuesday, though it is unclear whether the second round of storms will produce the travel issues feared by the governors.