Reed and Deal shut down government offices, take precautions in advance of winter storm

Elected officials opt to stay on the safe side

A little more than a year after snow and ice wreaked havoc on metro Atlanta, Mayor Kasim Reed and Gov. Nathan Deal are taking advanced precautions as a winter storm heads to Georgia.

The mayor’s office tonight ordered all government employees, with the exception of essential and emergency workers, to stay home on Monday due to the incoming winter storm.

Atlanta’s public works department, which today started pre-treating priority bridges and roads including Peachtree Street and Martin Luther King Jr. Drive, will continue spreading brine, sand, and salt on streets until the storm passes. Officials will also keep its 100-person emergency overflow shelter at the Old Adamsville Recreation Center, located at 3404 Delmar Lane, open for the third night in a row.

“The safety of our residents is our first priority,” Mayor Kasim Reed said in a statement. “In preparation of the winter weather approaching, I remind residents to stay home and off the roads during and after the storm, as we work to clear roads and respond to emergencies.”

Reed’s office, not wanting to be blamed again for the entire metro Atlanta’s response like last year, has blasted out the full list of phone numbers of other neighboring cities and counties. And the mayor tonight even started encouraging folks on Twitter to stay home as well.

@Jonny_Robins @Atlanta @weatherchannel No. You should stay home.
— Kasim Reed (@KasimReed) February 15, 2015

@_KathrynK @GTStudents I support a study in for tomorrow.

— Kasim Reed (@KasimReed) February 16, 2015

The Atlanta City Council will also convene on Tuesday at 1 p.m. rather than tomorrow for the full Council meeting.

Gov. Nathan Deal has declared a state of emergency “out of an abundance of caution” for 15 counties in north Georgia — Catoosa, Dade, Dawson, Fannin, Gilmer, Habersham, Lumpkin, Murray, Pickens, Rabun, Towns, Union, Walker, White and Whitfield. The governor ordered non-emergency and non-essential state workers in those counties and who work at the Gold Dome to stay home on Monday. Other state employees located in metro Atlanta are expected to report, however. For now, at least.

“I remain hopeful that the low pressure system will move northward, thus allowing warmer temperatures into our state,” Deal said in a statement. “With forecasts showing temperatures hovering around the freezing point, however, we have to work on the assumption that we’ll face icy conditions.”

To report inclement weather to the city, call 311. Between 7:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m., you can dial 404-546-6813 to tell the city about fallen trees or limbs.