Posted: Tuesday, January 28th 2014 at 9:14pm
Hall roads open, but many 'dangerous, treacherous'; GDOT says hazards increase overnight
By Ken Stanford Staff
Many secondary roads, such as Montgomery Drive in the West Hall area, were among the first roads in Hall County to become ice-covered. (Photo by Ken Stanford)
GAINESVILLE - "Extremely dangerous driving conditions exist throughout most of north and central Georgia."
That's the way the 9:00 advisory from Hall County Emergency Management Agency (EMA) began and GDOT officials are reminding motorists that as night falls, hazards increase in this kind of weather.
"We are still encouraging folks to stay off all roads," spokesman Scott Cagle said. "Many reports coming in about roads affected throughout the entire county but the concentration is in the north end. (Fire and EMS crews have responded to) several wrecks due to the road conditions with some of those wrecks involving overturned vehicles but as of now no reports of any serious injuries."
Cagle added that between 1:00 and 5:30, Hall County agencies responded to approximately 410 calls with 80 of those being motor vehicle accidents.
"As of right now it seems we are fairing better than some counties/agencies around us - and what is helping with that are citizens staying in place."
Although we consider many roads dangerous and/or treacherous, no roads are "closed" at this time.
STATE DOT: SUN SETS, HAZARDS INCREASE
Georgia Department of Transportation officials report that hazardous driving conditions are spreading throughout Northeast Georgia. GDOT crews are active throughout affected areas but conditions are likely to continue to deteriorate overnight.
Officials advise the public to refrain from all but "absolutely necessary" travel until midday Wednesday at the earliest.
The following locations are hazardous, icing has been reported and crews were working in these areas at 6:00:
· Barrow - SR 211, SR 81, SR 82 and SR 316
· Dawson - SR 183, SR 136 and SR 53
· Forsyth - SR 20 Bridge over the Chattahoochee River and SR 9 southbound
· Gwinnett - SR 20 bridge over the Chattahoochee River, SR 20, SR 316 at Collins Hill Road, SR 140 and SR 141 Northbound at Peachtree Corners East
· Hall - I-985 and SR 365 icing on bridges and higher elevations
· Habersham - SR 15/US 441, SR 105, SR 17
· Lumpkin - SR 9 and SR 60
· White - SR 11, SR 115, SR 75, SR 356
· Rabun - SR 2/US 76, SR 15/US 441
· Towns - SR 2/US 76
· Union - SR 2/SR 515/US 76 and SR 180
The only roads officially closed at this time (9:00) are the customary winter weather closings of State Route 180 Spur in Towns County and a portion of State Route 348 in White County.
Currently classified as temporarily unpassable are Interstate Highway 75 north and southbound in Bartow County at State Route 20, Interstate Highway 575 northbound in Cherokee County at Cumming Highway, State Route 16 at the Spalding/Coweta counties line; State Route 141 north and southbound in Gwinnett County, State Route 9 north and southbound in Forsyth County, State Route 12 eastbound in Haralson County, State Route 61 in Carroll County, State Route 36 near Nelson Drive in Upson County, State Route 156 east and west bound in Gordon County, portions of State Routes 14, 38 and 92 in Fulton County and Langford Parkway/State Route 166 in south Atlanta. Crews are working all locations.
In Metro Atlanta:
· Interstate Highway 285 interchanges at several locations in Cobb, Fulton and DeKalb counties including the Kennedy and Moreland Interchanges;
· Interstate Highway 20 at MLK Drive in Fulton County;
· Langford Parkway/State Route 166 in Fulton;
· State Route 13 in DeKalb;
· State Route 3 in Fulton;
· State Route 41 in Cobb County; and
· Interstate Highways 85 and 20 in Douglas County.
In central and west central Georgia:
· Interstate Highway 85 and I-185 in Troup and Harris counties;
· Interstate Highway 85 and State Routes 154, 16 and 34 in Coweta County;
· Interstate Highway 75 and State Routes 3, 19/41, 20, 74, 138, 920 and 42 in Henry County;
· Interstate Highway 75 and State Routes 16, 3,362 and 92 in Spalding County;
· State Routes 92, 279 and 85 in Fayette County;
· State Routes 116,354 and 190 in Harris;
· State Routes 27 and 190 in Meriwether County;
· State Routes 100 and 120 in Haralson County; and
· State Routes 1, 22 and 219 in Troup.
· Interstate Highway 75 in Bartow and Dade counties;
· Interstate Highway 59 in Dade;
· Interstate Highway 575 State Route 140 in Cherokee County;
· State Routes 156 and 53 in Gordon County;
· State Route 92 in Paulding County;
· U.S. 411 and State Routes 1 and 101 in Floyd County;
· State Route1 in Chattooga County;
· State Routes 136, 157, 58, 299 and 301 in Dade;
· State Routes 3, 20, and 113 in Bartow; and
· State Route 157 in Walker County.
East central Georgia:
· Interstate Highway 20 from Rockdale County to Taliaferro County;
· All I-20 elevated structures;
· The I-20/State Route 22 interchange in Taliaferro;
· State Routes 212, 81 and 20 in Newton County;
· State Routes 12, 44, 15 and 77 in Greene County;
· State Route 231 bridges in Washington County;
· All bridges in Columbia, Baldwin and Putnam counties;
· State Routes 11, 12 and 83 in Morgan County; and
· State Routes 10 and 22 in Oglethorpe County.
· Interstate Highway 985 and Stare Route 365 in Hall County;
· State Route 400 ramps to State Route 141 in Forsyth County;
· State Route 141 in Gwinnett County;
· State Routes 53 and 136 in Dawson County;
· State Routes 9 and 60 in Lumpkin County;
· State Routes 15, 17 and 105 in Habersham County;
· State Routes 11, 75, 115 and 356 in White County;
· State Route 2 in Rabun, Union and Towns counties.
Motorists are urged to:
*Check weather conditions before leaving home Wednesday morning and stay off the roads unless it is an emergency if conditions warrant. Choose caution and stay where you are instead of driving in hazardous winter weather conditions.
*Slow down and stay behind the snowplows. The road behind the plow will be the safest place to drive. Allow at least ten car lengths between your vehicle and snowplows or hopper spreaders.
*Do not pass. The plows are wide, and sometimes a group of trucks will work in tandem to clear snow quickly, especially on major highways.
*Be particularly aware of black ice conditions on surfaces such as bridge decks and entrance and exit ramps late Tuesday night and early Wednesday morning.
*Remember that technology helps, but only to a point. Four-wheel drive, anti-lock brakes and traction control are beneficial advancements in today's cars, trucks and SUVs, but they can't take the place of good driving habits and the need to reduce speed on snowy or icy roads.
Georgia DOT urges travelers to exercise caution and call 511 for updated information on roadway conditions before getting on the road during a winter weather event.
For more information on Georgia DOT, please visit www.dot.ga.gov or subscribe to the Press Release RSS feed. You can also follow the agency on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/GDOTNE ) and Twitter (https://twitter.com/GDOTNE).
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