Atlanta Digs Out of Snow Gridlock as Mayor Defends Response

Kasim Reed faces public anger after snow snarled city

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Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed fended off attacks Wednesday from constituents angry over the city’s response to a snowfall Tuesday that still had highways gridlocked the next day.

It only took three inches of snow to leave the city in mayhem Tuesday night and into Wednesday morning, causing over 1,200 traffic accidents, 300 injuries and one fatality, officials said, as traffic backed up on Atlanta highways and held up motorists overnight. Five people died in traffic accidents in neighboring Alabama.

The snow stranded several hundred students in transit from Atlanta schools overnight, as the warm-blooded city struggled to utilize its 30 salt-spreaders and 40 snowplows. Atlantans lambasted Reed on Twitter for his handling of the snow dusting. 

PHOTOS: Snow Woes as Atlanta Freezes

Reed defended the city’s response Wednesday morning and blamed the gridlock on decisions by the school district and businesses to simultaneously let students and workers off early on Tuesday.

“I said immediately yesterday that releasing all of these folks was not the right way to go,” Reed said on CNN, adding that the releases should have been staggered.

“We’re going to get the city operational, we’re going to get people off the [roads], and we’re going to keep people safe,” Reed added. “We responded immediately, we started de-icing the city before the snow even fell.”

Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal announced that state government offices would be closed Thursday, and urged people to stay home so emergency responders and road workers would have an easier time clearing the remaining gridlock, which had begun to ease by Wednesday afternoon. “We do not want our employees on the road, and we would encourage businesses to follow suit,” he said at a news conference in Atlanta.

-with reporting from Dan Hirschhorn

30 comments
bsyllimnia@yahoo.com
bsyllimnia@yahoo.com

The Mayor commented in the Snow Storm of 2006 that he purchased equipment and trucks and would be prepared and people fell wholeheartedly for his story . . . . but its 2014  . ."Where is the equipment? Why was it not being used during the snow storm? Is the Mayor more concerned about the Ferris Wheel and Atlanta Stadium more than the residents of GA?" It was a cheap excuse to keep his own visions of a new Atlanta from withering.

bsyllimnia@yahoo.com
bsyllimnia@yahoo.com

Willie B's Baby Brother at his worst again . . . I felt for sure that severe snow storm meant have residents to stay at home. Its all about $$ and self-pride but these politicians need to know that this is God's world and we cannot battle mother nature . . . If the Mayor can scrape up billions of dollars on a Ferris Wheel, and Atlanta Falcon Stadium  surely he can preserve and protect the residents especially children. People wake up this is just bull crap nobody wants to take responsibility for risking the lives of residents of Georgia and other states . . . and its not about the race game . . .

ccopeland48
ccopeland48

I stayed at work and walked home the next day. Stop saying we have little winter experience most of those people aren't from Georgia or Atlanta. Too many moving down here from bigger cities up north that can't drive period. Parents should' have kept their children home like my parents would do when I was younger like the blizzard of 93. A lot of jobs informed their workers that morning that if they didn't come in to work they'd lose job Georgia is an at will state. So of course tons of people tried to rush home instead of staying home and using common sense that's the reason why the roads couldn't be treated properly because of the traffic. Stop believing the false reports coming from the media because it was gridlock traffic downtown Atlanta for 4 hrs before that not to mention a few bus accidents and  a train caught fire way before the snow got bad.

prejhette4
prejhette4

Come on give the Mayor and Governor a break------you all should be using your own judgment ---you saw it coming,   The Mayor or Governor did not make you send your child to school or advised you to drive your car.    just gotta blame someone-----blame yourselves for being ignorant to the FACT.  I STAYED HOME.

CesarFerrer
CesarFerrer

Mayor Reed and Gov. Deal should be ashamed and embarrassed of the preparation and response to this "storm". Maybe its just me, but 2-3 inches of snow does not qualify as a storm and there is no way that small amount of snow should've crippled the city and gridlocked the roads. It normally takes me 35 minutes to get home from work, Tuesday it took me 15 hours to get home, a 35 minute drive turns into a 15 hour journey? The Government was totally unprepared, the mayor needs to stop saying they did better now than in 2011, that's a cop out. If in 2011 the city had 4 pieces of equipment and this time they had 70, there should have been no issue. In cities like Chicago, and my hometown, New York City, this would never happen with 3 FEET of snow !!!!!! At the very least, we need an apology and we need the head of GDOT to resign or be fired, someone needs to be fired for dropping the ball, or as they say in Georgia, dropping the peach. If we keep the same people in charge, we will always get the same result. Thank GOD Mayor Reed only had to deal with 2 inches of snow. If he couldn't deal with 2 inches of snow, could you imagine the piss poor job he would do if there was ever a terrorist attack like 9/11 in Atlanta? He IS NOT THE PERSON TO LEAD ATLANTA, this coming from a Democrat who supported him !!!!!!!



susnmiller
susnmiller

Mister Mayor of Atlanta, I see you upset the woman on MSNBC.  You made my day. She knows best and is in tight with the   President' s right hand.   My husband started home about 2pm from Roswell Road near the River about 12 miles from our home. He arrived after midnight.  

You did not need that treatment from her.

Susan Miller






DelawareJack
DelawareJack

It was not the tiny 3 inches of snow that caused the problems .. it was the layer of ice beneath that puny 3 inches of snow . There is not one single city anywhere that would not be severely affected nor one single vehicle that can move easily or safely anywhere when that city is covered with ice or where a vehicle is moving on a sheet of ice ....

BenJoseph
BenJoseph

Unfortunately, like the presidency, Atlanta was not interested in electing someone that could actually do the job.  The election was determined by a  particular constituency that did not judge by the content of character.

AlexDavis
AlexDavis

Having your "School Systems" depending on the presence, of "Free Lunch Students" has caused another "Mess". Why did they have "School" on Tuesday? What were they teaching, that would not be available, in the future? Federal dollars has made Atlanta and Georgia, "Political Hoes". God saved US, not man. But, that's always the case!

bryanfred1
bryanfred1

So the mayor has zero say over what the city school districts do in a potential crisis situation?  I guess we should all be as surprised as he was that Atlanta's resources were not only inadequate but also not mobilized?  As a former longtime resident of Atlanta I challenge anyone to say they are surprised at the city being caught flat-footed.  The only question is who the race card will be played on...Al Roker?

BenjaminNeuells
BenjaminNeuells

Nobody is saying Asians will ever be a minority in Asia

Nobody is saying Africans will ever be a minority in Africa

So why are they saying White people will be a minority in EVERY White country in 2040?

That's because "anti-racists" only impose Diversity in White countries!

Because "anti-racists" want a world without White children!

Anti-racist is a codeword for Anti-White. Diversity is a codeword for White Genocide.

raidx259
raidx259

On their defense, I don't think Atlanta was supposed to get this much snow. The forecast was calling for the bad weather to hit further East. I think they got caught off guard.

DwaneBozworth
DwaneBozworth

Last time this happened, it caused the price of peaches to go up.  :)

But yes, Atlanta rarely gets snow.  The weather is usually warm year-round. They don't have salt trucks, snow blowers, plows or shovels.  All this costs taxpayer dollars.

Most importantly, because snow is such an infrequent occurrence, people in Atlanta don't know how to drive in snow; and car owners will end up in an accident as a result of trying to over-compensate.  Unlike areas which have snow, I imagine most cars sold in the Atlanta are front-wheel drive.

In other parts of the US, where snow and inclement weather is a part of daily living,  taxes are paid for plows, trucks, and staff.  Planning also occurs.  Also, the residents purchase all-wheel drive cars; knowing the value of all-wheel drive; you remain in control of your vehicle. The process of learning how to drive in inclement weather is simply not going to happen unless it snows again.


All that said, I don't think there's much the Governor could have done with a few hours advanced notice, except ask residents to gas up, or stay safe at work or the office and also raid the vending machine before your co-workers do, and it's empty. :)


Still, there's only one fatality, and that's the great news for the metro area of 5 million! 

SmailBuzzby
SmailBuzzby

Saying that you should have done your job is hardly defending yourself...

SmoothEdward1
SmoothEdward1

Digs out of thee-inches of snow? Are they kidding? How could three-inches of snow cause so much chaos? That's not much.

xjm419
xjm419

WOW GOD BLESS EVERYONE THIS IS CRAZY AND SCARY SITUATION IM FROM MASSACHUSETTS AND SNOW CAN GET SO CRAZY AND SCARY. I HOPE EVERYONE STAYS SAFE I WISH THERE IS SOMETHING I CAN DO TO HELP :( THIS MAKES ME SAD

EdwardE
EdwardE

“Multiculturalism” is a program that is FORCED upon EVERY & ONLY White countries.
“Multiculturalism” is a program to turn EVERY White country into a non-White country.
This IS geNOcide. WHITE geNOcide.
If you are White, and you object to your own geNOcide, you are called a RACIST!
Well guess what, my people, White people, are catching on very quickly to the following two things:
1 – Multiculturalism is a code for White geNOcide.
2 – Anti-racist is a code for anti-White.

laphillips526
laphillips526

Think this is a joke? Go read all the posts on this page:   https://www.facebook.com/toomersfortuscaloosa

Special needs kids are stuck at school, needing food (handled by emergency crews and social media). Woman watches as her husband dies of a heart attack, stuck in traffic because 9-1-1 responders can't reach him, people having babies at home and in their cars because they can't get help. 4,000 kids are still stuck at school. Either be a part of the problem or be a part of the solution. Either way, this is real, whether it effects you personally or not.

eagle11772
eagle11772

I just read that the Chinese are reconfiguring all their bomber aircraft and missiles to bombard the U.S. with snow and ice instead of explosives.  We're DOOMED ! :(

raidx259
raidx259

@SmoothEdward1 @SmoothEdward1 When you don't have the equipment to deal with it, you are in for some trouble. In eastern NC they sprayed the roads with brine before the storm. The precipitation didn't arrive until 5pm yesterday. Got around 3 inches of sleet and ice over night. Main roads somewhat thawed out today, but with the temps dropping into the teens tonight they will freeze solid again. Took today off from work and possibly tomorrow.


Can't chance going out with the road in those conditions. Have to watch out for idiots. Specially those idiots who drive pickup trucks with big tires, tinned windows and who like to double park (yeah you know who you are) who think their 4x4s can handle the ice, drive as if the roads were dry and put everyone around them in danger.



byrdvt
byrdvt

@SmoothEdward1 ICE was the issue not snow... they didn't pre-treat the roads... so think about driving on a smooth sheet of black ice.

Bullsgt
Bullsgt

@xjm419 I try not to respond to individuals but stop with the caps and theatrics. It's winter, it happens, relax!

Bullsgt
Bullsgt

@EdwardWPWW  Ed you have self-esteem issues right? Your P's dropped you or something, maybe ancestors were a little too familiar with the relatives? Maybe a thermaldahide babe issue? Whatever the issue... Just sad!

cjh2nd
cjh2nd

@laphillips526

" Either be a part of the problem or be a part of the solution..."

what if i choose option C, and choose not to be a part of the solution, but haven't and won't do anything to contribute to the problem, therefore, i'm not a part of it.

DwaneBozworth
DwaneBozworth

@byrdvt

Pre-treating the roads?  You mean with Magnesium chloride?  Well, even provided a week's notice, there's not enough time to could go through a proper bid process for purchase, along with the trucks and equipment necessary for proper application.

Also, because the weather is always warm, everyone I know in the Southern states (even in Atlanta) own two-wheel-drive vehicles.  There's no need to own an all-wheel drive vehicle. 

BuzzBayless
BuzzBayless

@byrdvt@SmoothEdward1Also add in the lack of winter driving experience of most Georgians. It's just not the kind of thing they're used to dealing with. Nobody is to blame for it, it's just the weather. The mayor doesn't have any control over that.


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