A winter storm that has swept across the South and plains states has paralyzed motorists in several states. On January 11, Georgia declared a state of emergency as crews scrambled to deal with roads covered in ice and four inches of snow. Several other Southern states, unused to snow accumulating on the roads and highways, have experienced numerous serious car accidents since the storm began on January 10.
According to a story from BBC News, eleven people have died in accidents due to the dangerous weather. They include three drivers who died in crashes in Arkansas, two who were killed in an accident in Louisiana, and two who died in single-car accidents in Oklahoma.
The storm and its aftermath also left some motorists trapped on the roads. One truck driver said he had been in his semi, trapped on an interstate ramp in Georgia, for nearly a full day. He said he had never seen anything like the storm in his 46 years of trucking.
In Atlanta, city officials have hired 11 extra snow plows to clear off the streets. Since snow does not often accumulate, the city normally has only eight plows for a city that is 132 square miles in size.
The storm left thousands without power across the South. Most flights at Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport were canceled. Hartsfield-Jackson, the main hub of Delta Air Lines, is the busiest airport in the world.
The snow even affected the inauguration of Georgia’s new governor, Nathan Deal. Instead of holding the ceremony on the steps of the Capitol building as planned on Monday, the swearing-in was moved inside to the House chambers.