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Travel in winter in the deep south

Atlanta, Georgia
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Travel in winter in the deep south

When one travels in the winter even in the deep south then you should always check weather and road conditions. A good source of info is the DOT website for each state and on your cell phone you can check current conditions by dialing 511.

The winter weather that hit the deep south has had an impact on travel throughout the region.

In Louisiana I 10 was closed and parts of the road opened yesterday and the rest today. This is a major route across the southern US and is usually a good route to take to avoid snow and ice that one might see on I 20 or I 40.

Roads in Alabama and Georgia remain a nightmare. The cities of Birmingham and Atlanta became a virtual parking lot.

Interstates I 10, I 20, I 59 and I 65 in Alabama were impacted.

In Georgia interstates I 20, I 75 and I 85 were all impacted as well as the perimeter I 285 around Atlanta which many people use.

Cleveland
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1. Re: Travel in winter in the deep south

When there is snow in the South, those interested in getting across the country ironically would fare better on I-80 or perhaps I-70 (although further south and with less robust road clearing/treatment capabilities than further north), all depending upon forecasts. In the north, it's very rare that major interstates aren't cleared within hours after the end of a storm.

Snow storms that would cripple the South typically wouldn't be an issue in snowier regions of the U.S., although this year's more severe winter has exhausted many supplies of the vital road salt in some areas. Miners in the salt mines under Lake Erie are working overtime shifts.

Of course, driving anywhere during a major storm isn't advisable, especially for those lacking properly equipped vehicles (e.g., at least all-weather tires) and winter driving skills and experience.

Wednesbury, UK
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2. Re: Travel in winter in the deep south

Hi PeachBelle.

Yes, saw it on the news here in the UK, they (our end) were talking like it never happens, (shock, horror, snows in southern US) which we know it does.

We had our first snow of the winter here today, but the monsoon conditions of the last two months meant its just melted on touchdown. No respite for our flooded south this weekend either, sometimes I'm happy we live on relatively high ground.

Lewes, United...
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3. Re: Travel in winter in the deep south

Thanks for the valuable input PB. All really good sound advice. Yes, my DH - who normally has no idea about US weather, told me with surprise about Atlanta's weather, he got this from the sports that he follows!

My sister is in Miami for business and complaining about the weather, too!

No snow round here yet, just rain, wind, more rain, hail, wind, rain, thunder, rain, lightening, rain, wind, rain, rain, rain .....

Yes, so glad we live up a hill, and that we never bought our dream house in France - a watermill that has been flooded this winter!

SWT

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4. Re: Travel in winter in the deep south

Thanks for the personal update, Peach. We don't have a TV, read all the news online, but were still shocked when we saw the weather channel coverage at our ski lodge today. Atlanta was stopped cars for as far eye could see. Pretty amazing!

Here in the rockies we have had over a foot of snow come down today, on top of the pile we already have, with no end in sight. The skiing was wet & the shoveling heavy LOL. We have been shoveling & shoveling & shoveling. Feel sorry for those trying to fly into our smaller ski towns for a vacation since the flights will be cancelled with this storm.

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5. Re: Travel in winter in the deep south

PB you have been on my mind while watching the Weather Channel coverage of the mess that Atlanta has become. I can't believe with the NWS warnings starting Sunday they didn't cancel school on Tuesday. Yikes!

Hope you had your Yellowstone cooler mentality and had food and water!

We f-i-n-a-l-l-y got snow yesterday for the first time since before Christmas! We've had almost 11 inches in 36 hours and are very thankful for it. It is heavy as heck to move it, so shoveling is both a strength and cardio workout!

Denalicat, your area sounds like a mess too!

So sorry about the UK rain. SWT, the watermill sounds awesome except for when it floods! We want you to buy it when it dries out then host a TA RT meeting, lol!

TE, you are right about routes. I80 and I70 really have looked good the last few days. Even with 11 inches the roads here are driveable altho they did not gravel one of the hills up to our neighborhood yesterday afternoon so it was slippy-slidey for people to get home.

Pam

Edited: 31 January 2014, 03:04
Cleveland
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6. Re: Travel in winter in the deep south

PeachBelle, here's hoping you weren't caught out in the mess!

Chapel Hill, North...
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7. Re: Travel in winter in the deep south

Usually it doesn't last long in the South, but every once in awhile — POW!

I'm in North Carolina and we got some of that, too, but didn't have the traffic issues that GA and AL had. I really feel for the parents who couldn't get to their kids and kids who couldn't get to their parents.

It should all be gone by tomorrow, though.

PeachBelle, what do you think went wrong?

Atlanta, Georgia
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8. Re: Travel in winter in the deep south

Thanks. I was at home but DH was at the courthouse and we only live about 8 miles away and it took him over 3 hours to drive home.

What happened?

1. people did not listen to the Weather Channel- it is right here in Atlanta.

2. none of the roads were pre-treated for ice and snow.

3. our GA Emergency Management people did not get on board until after 5 pm on the day the storm hit. It really started snowing at 11 am.

4. Atlanta is a driving town that is has a huge metro area the size of the state of MA. The entire area has lots of hills too which makes driving in ice and snow difficult.

5. Atlanta's mayor does not have the type of power that the mayor does in some large cities like NY. We have 28 counties and about 140 smaller cities where school boards, county governments and mayors all make decisions.

6. People here in the south (including me) just do not know how to drive in snowy conditions.

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9. Re: Travel in winter in the deep south

Wow, Peach! 8 miles in 3 hours! Must have been tense driving for him.

Yes, Pam, we're getting hammered- 2 ft in 24 hours. I know what you mean about heavy to shovel- high water content. It was a challenge to even ski yesterday. I have been skiing daily, but today we're hunkering in by the woodstove.

Another thing, Peach, you all probably don't have snow tires or even all season mud & snows or 4 wheel drive.

Edited: 31 January 2014, 14:09
Atlanta, Georgia
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10. Re: Travel in winter in the deep south

That is correct denalicat no all season or snow tires here in the south.

And to add they did several interviews with travelers on our local TV stations and those from the north who were RV'ing to Florida seemed to be better prepared for winter conditions. They had flashlights, extra food, water and blankets. Many of them shared with others who were stranded on the highways.