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Deal implements immediate reforms for winter storm warnings

Deal implements immediate reforms for winter storm warnings

February 3, 2014

Gov. Nathan Deal today announced immediate reforms for how the state communicates with Georgians when under a winter storm warning; he also named the Governor’s Severe Winter Weather Warning and Preparedness Task Force, which will advise on implementation of reforms and suggest short-term and long-term solutions.

“Effective immediately, a storm warning will trigger a message to cell phones in targeted areas, as in the Amber Alert system, and advise against road travel,” said Deal. “We will go one step further with school superintendents by emailing them weather condition updates, so that they have the most up-to-date information when determining whether to close schools.

“We will overhaul the state emergency app with shelter information, alternative transportation routes and other emergency-related information. Lastly, as storms approach, I have ordered Georgia Emergency Management Agency to consult with local meteorologists on current weather modeling and predictions.

“We made reforms after the 2011 storm on how we treat our roads, and because of that, we have more road treatment facilities located in more critical areas. All the equipment and the all supplies in the world won’t help if the trucks can’t get on the roads. We’ve got to communicate quicker and more effectively on the front end to keep as many vehicles off the road as possible.”

The preparedness task force will meet in an open forum setting and deliver preparedness recommendations to Deal in a timely manner. It will convene as early as schedules will allow and issue a report within 60 days. An internal review by agency heads involved in emergency response will yield a report and action plan to the governor within 10 days.

The task force members are listed below:

 

Name

Office

Position

Bart Gobeil (Chair)

Governor's Office 

Chief Operating Officer

Charley English

GA Emergency Management Agency

Executive Director

Keith Golden

Dept. of Transportation

Commissioner

Mark Williams

Dept. of Natural Resources

Commissioner

Mark McDonough

Dept. of Public Safety

Commissioner

Jim Butterworth

Dept. of Defense

Major General

Jannine Miller

GA Regional Transportation Authority

Executive Director

Chris Tomlinson

State Road and Tollway Authority

Executive Director

Glenn Burns

WSB

Chief Meteorologist

Markina Brown

CBS

Chief Meteorologist

Ken Cook

Fox 5

Chief Meteorologist

Chesley McNeil

11 Alive

Meteorologist

Robert Avossa

Fulton County Schools

Superintendent

Emily Lembeck

Marietta City Schools

Superintendent

Michael Thurmond

DeKalb County Schools

Superintendent

Keith Parker

MARTA

General Manager/CEO

Ed Crowell

Georgia Motor Trucking

President and CEO

Jeffrey Parker

HNTB Corp.; former Connecticut DOT commissioner

Vice President

Anthony Wilson

Georgia Power

Executive VP, Customer Service and Operations

Jerry Donovan

Georgia Transmission Corporation

President and CEO

Hala Moddelmog

Metro Atlanta Chamber

President 

Gil West

Delta

Senior VP, Airport Customer Service and TechOps

Steve Thompson

GA State Senate

District 33

Steve Gooch

GA State Senate

District 51

Jay Roberts

GA House of Representatives

District 155

Mike Glanton

GA House of Representatives

District 75

Kelvin Cochran

City of Atlanta

Fire Chief

George Turner

Atlanta Police Department

Chief of Police

William Wright

Barrow County

911 Emergency Communications Director

Keith Stellman

National Weather Service

Meteorologist-in-Charge

Judy Agerton

AT&T

Regional VP- External Affairs

Eric Adams

Verizon

Director of Operations

Gary George City of Alpharetta  Director of Public Safety and Emergency Management Director