we survived it, somehow.
atlanta was crippled by 3-4 inches of snow and ice last week as a storm deftly arrived and put the city into a gridlock. the snowflakes looked harmless as they gathered on our cars early tuesday afternoon, but it was just hours after the precipitation started that the trouble began.
businesses and schools released their employees and students ahead of schedule on tuesday, which meant that more cars were on the roadways than the roadways really are built to handle. no matter which way you looked, deciding which route would be best, cars were everywhere. i thought to take 285, but it was backed-up about a mile to the on-ramp. i then tried to be clever by taking 141 all the way into the city, but what do you know? other folks were doing that, too! it took me seven hours to get home. i was in tears around hour six. however, if you have heard any of the reports, you know that i was a lucky one.
there were countless numbers of drivers who had to spend the night in hotels with strangers or in their vehicles. people were running on empty and several had to leave their cars abandoned on the roads. these abandoned cars and pile-ups made it impossible for salt and sand trucks to get through to treat the roads.
the storm got the best of our city. as you could have guessed, so many opinions were criticizing the local government for not preparing better. but, in all honesty, how do you better prepare for a situation such as this one? yes, more salt and sand would have alleviated the pain, but there is only so much we can do when facing mother nature.
mayor kasim reed defended the city’s response: “we responded immediately, we started de-icing the city before the snow even fell” while also placing a bit of blame: “releasing all of those folks was not the right way to go“, in reference to the school districts and businesses simultaneously letting students and workers off early on tuesday.
governor nathan deal gave the most sensible instructions, urging atlantans to “stay home so emergency responders and road works would have an easier time clearing the remaining gridlock.”
as they say, things could always be worse. and although this city struggled through two days of unwelcome weather, we now know what to and what not to do if and when this kind of storm comes our way again. be thankful you made it home safe and sound at some point.
ps. it was this ice storm that kept us cooped up and unable to host NRW last week. stay tuned as we will be back out there in just a couple of days!