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Caution urged on Forsyth area roads as snow, ice melting
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Forsyth County News

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By: Joshua Sutton

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FORSYTH COUNTY — Authorities urged caution on Forsyth County roads Thursday as the overnight snow and ice began to melt.

According to the Forsyth County Sheriff’s Office, most residents heeded the warnings to stay home Wednesday night, when the roads were “extremely slick.”

By midday, most of the roads in south Forsyth were described as clear, though there could still be some hidden slick spots.

Also mostly clear were the major roads in north Forsyth. However, smaller streets and neighborhoods in that area were reporting some slush and icy patches in valleys and shaded areas.

Most of the heavy snowfall seemed to have missed Forsyth.

The county’s emergency operations center closed about 2 a.m. Thursday, said Doug Rainwater, a spokesman for the sheriff’s office.

The center housed a central space for decision-making representatives from the sheriff’s office, fire department, 911 center and school system.

The National Weather Service estimated that 8.9 inches of snow fell in the Trenton area in northwest Georgia. Dalton recorded 6.8 inches; Blairsville saw 7.1 inches and Canton, in neighboring Cherokee County, got 3.4 inches. Gainesville received 3.5 inches. Meanwhile metro Atlanta got mostly rain.

Personnel responded to two accidents with minor injuries Thursday night, Rainwater said, as well as some single-vehicle crashes that occurred when cars left a road due to snow and ice.

“After the rain started, everything tapered off,” Rainwater said. “A [utility] pole split in half off Bentley Road from an accident. But it was really a very uneventful night for a snow event.”

The winter storm warning was downgraded overnight to a winter weather advisory, which expired at 10 a.m. Temperatures were expected to reach 40 degrees Thursday and the mid-40s today.

The weekend forecast looks relatively warm, with partly sunny skies and high temperatures near 50 degrees both Saturday and Sunday before rain returned Monday.

The storm Wednesday prompted the closure and delayed opening of schools and government offices Thursday.

The Forsyth County school system cancelled classes for the third straight day and county government offices and courts were opening at 10 a.m.

Utility companies said more than 6,000 customers were without power in north Georgia after several inches of snow.

Before dawn Thursday, Georgia's electric membership cooperatives about 3,000 customers were power in north Georgia. Authorities say the outages are primarily in Gilmer, White, Gordon and Catoosa Counties.

Georgia Power's outage data early Thursday showed that more than 3,000 of its customers were without power. Many of those outages were in the northeast corner of Georgia.


The Associated Press and FCN regional staff contributed to this report.