A rare winter storm paralyzed large sections of the southeastern United States yesterday. Serious impacts from snow, sleet, and freezing rain were felt from the Gulf Coast to Virginia.
According to the NWS, 2.6 inches of snow fell in Atlanta, GA – a new daily record for the region’s largest city. As a whole, the Deep South is not accustomed to wintry precipitation and most cities and towns are not equipped to deal it. Salt spreaders and snowplows are in short supply across the region. As a result, major roads turned into sheets of ice creating very hazardous travel conditions.
The timing of the storm made the situation even worse. Arriving in the afternoon, many people were caught on the roads trying to make their way home. Officials have reported hundreds of traffic accidents and stranded vehicles. Many people were even forced to shelter in place overnight in cars, schools, and stores.