GAINESVILLE - Perilous roadway conditions now exist in Forsyth, Gwinnett and Hall Counties, according to the state Department of Transportation.
SR 369 from SR 9 to SR 400 is closed due to a tree and power lines across the road, no estimated clearance time. Reports of icing on I-985 northbound and southbound from I-85 in Gwinnett past exit 24/SR 369 in Gainesville. Reports of icing in Interstate 85 northbound and southbound exit 137/SR 11/US 129 in Jackson County through Banks County to Exit 154/SR 63/Martin Bridge in Franklin County.
State DOT officials note that latest weather predictions call for a "dire ice storm" that could include extreme black ice; 7+ inches of snow across Northeast Georgia; freezing rain with up to 1 inch of ice accumulation north and south of the I-20 corridor; and 20 -30 mph winds which increase the threat for widespread downed limbs, trees and power lines.
DOT is working with the Outdoor Advertising Association of Georgia (OAAG) to post advisories and messages on over 250 electronic billboards across the state. Information will also be posted on Changeable Message Signs in the metro area.
GAINESVILLE-HALL COUNTY UPDATE
"Right now we still have additional staffing that are manning four-wheel drive vehicles," said county EMA spokesman Scott Cagle. "In addition to our normal response units we have nine four-wheel drive vehicles strategically located throughout the county to assist the operations division. This has worked well and we will continue this tactical plan throughout this weather event."
Cagle says between midnight Monday and 8:30 Wednesday night there had been 2,794 emergency calls handled by agencies countywide. Eighty of those were to wrecks but there were no serious injuries.
Meanwhile, following an Emergency Operations Center update Wednesday, Mayor Danny Dunagan reminded citizens "we are under a State of Emergency" and encouraged everyone to stay off the roads.