2014 winter storm Georgia
Yesterday, January 28, 2014, will likely become a day that goes down in Georgia weather history. Shortly after thousands of Georgia drivers became stranded on major highways and other roads, and students were stuck at school with no way home, Gov. Nathan Deal declared a state of emergency in Georgia due to the 2014 winter storm.
What began as a normal day at the Mopdog office quickly turned into a scramble of employees trying to get home before the weather made a turn for the worst. We are certainly keeping those in mind who have not made it home from school, work or anywhere else, or are still stuck on the road. We have put our personal snow stories together to share with you.
Lauren – I drove 2 hours to go about 5 miles to pick up my daughter. From there, we drove another hour before hitting a stand still because of a car pile up. I then had to park and walk about a mile (carrying Ava Grace) to our house. Fortunately, my husband is out of town this week so he did not have to face the terrible weather but we were on the phone back and forth during my travels. Once I was home safe in the warmth of home, he informed me he was sitting on the patio overlooking the resort pool sipping a cocktail. Really? His meetings are in Fort Myers, Florida and it is about 80 degrees there right now! Jealous!
My sister however, had us all worried. She was stuck on her school bus for 7 hours before getting a friends dad to pick her up and get her to the top my parents neighborhood. From there my dad met her, they walked home and were very thankful to be safe and warm!
Bill – I work 7 miles from home and was not able to get home due to all the accidents and closed roads. So I traveled north to Cartersville across Hwy 293 down Hwy 61 to Dallas then cut over to come in the backside of our subdivision. 45 miles and 2 hours and 40 minutes later I made it home. As much as it was a white-knuckle ride it was an exciting adventure. Glad to be home.
Katelyn – The Day After Tomorrow is how my brother referred to the snow situation on his walk home from school yesterday. From my experience, that was pretty accurate.
Six hours of driving and 2 miles of trudging through the snow got me the 30 miles to my apartment after leaving Mopdog at noon. A few hours into my drive, I finally stopped at a gas station to pick up two packs of crackers and a water bottle to serve as my breakfast, lunch and dinner. I made a lot of friends on the road, saw a lot of accidents and maneuvered myself through the worst driving conditions of my life.
My husband’s 8-mile commute was worse than mine, He got home after 1am, drove 10 hours and finally parked at OK Cafe in Buckhead to walk to our Vinings apartment shortly before midnight
Fiona – When I left work around noon I had no idea how bad things were going to get. I have lived in Georgia my entire life and had never experienced driving in the snow before yesterday, and I must say, I really do not want to do it again any time soon. My normal 20-minute drive took me a little over 2 hours yesterday. At the time I thought that my drive was bad, but after hearing everyone else’s stories and seeing all the accidents and people stranded, I consider myself very lucky!
My roommate on the other hand has had it much worse. She teaches at a private school in Midtown and was not dismissed until 3. She immediately got on the road to try to make it back to the Kennesaw. After over 9 hours in the car and only making it a few miles, she abandoned her car somewhere on 75 and walked to a hotel where she spent the night on the floor of a hotel lobby with 20 others. Now we are waiting to see if 75 will be cleared enough for her to make it back today. Fingers crossed!
This was not exactly the snow day I had in mind.
Brooke – After seven total hours, a three-mile walk and witnessing multiple accidents and spin outs, I finally made it home. I left the Mopdog office around 12:30 and headed up highway 41. After celebrating that I was next in the turn lane, I waited about 30 minutes and turned ever so slowly across the ice only to learn that the road to my subdivision was closed.
So I pulled into Johnny’s Pizza and met my brother. We took refuge until my parents came to pick us up. From there we battled icy hills, so icy that our 4-wheel drive couldn’t make it up them. People offered their help and homes, as we had been stuck in the truck for three hours. Finally, we found a subdivision to park in and bundled up for the walk home. We lined our shoes with grocery bags and trekked three miles home in the ice and snow.
I send thoughts and prayers to those still stuck in their cars or misplaced from their homes.
Chris S. – Strangely enough I’m having flashbacks to The Great Chicago Snowpocalypse of 2011. I left work around 12:30, being the seasoned Midwesterner of the office I figured this would be a breeze. Not so much. My usual commute is 12 miles, or about 20 minutes to the very northern tip of Marietta, bordering Woodstock. I started my stop watch for fun when I left the office, thinking “Boy, if this reads 2 hours by the time I get home I’m going to be PISSED”. I navigated through and passed semi-trucks, pickup trucks, and others trapped in place who had no idea how to properly drive (or were not well equipped) through snow and ice. 5 Hours and 6 Minutes later, I stumbled out of my car to walk down the hill of my driveway to my house (I was not going to pull down that hill, I would never get out again). I learned and gained one thing from this event, even in misery and frustration, I feel that my team at Mopdog stuck together, keep each other company, and has grown a lot closer.
A few tips from a life-long Midwesterner:
Let your car coast, do not put more than very light (I do very very light tapping) pressure on your gas pedal or brake. Let your car’s idle do all of the work.
If you’re going to buy an SUV/Pickup, go all the way and get a 4×4. Rear wheel drive will get you nowhere (literally) in snow and ice.
Have your tires and brake pads inspected every 6 months. In snow, ice, or rain, it might save your life.
- Always carry an emergency bag in the back of your car.
Mine is much more tragic.
I walked across the street. It was kind of cold outside. Starbucks was closed so I couldn’t get coffee.
Carolyn – I left the office around 12:30. Weaved around cars stuck on the roads, off-roaded and drove on the sidewalk, watched a member of our armed services joined with civilians pushing strangers’ cars up a hill, and around 3:30 I parked my car in a hospital garage (with hopes of a grace period so I won’t get towed). I proceeded to put on every article of clothing I could find in my car (including a towel!). I walked about a mile to a friend’s house where I hung out for about 4 hours. Then I found out another friend was in need of a place to stay and headed to our house and would be driving very near my exact location – so I hitched a ride! Thankfully, after four very close encounters with busting it on the ice as I scrambled across 4 lanes of traffic, I made it to his car safely. And eventually home safely.
Through the adversity, there was a bit of humanity that came out. The strangers pushing cars and talking with passersby on the sidewalks, reminded me that there is still hope in this world.
Do you have a snow story to share? Comment below because we would love to hear it.
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