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Bentley Issues State of Emergency for Winter Weather

By Brandon Moseley
Alabama Political Reporter

For the second time this year, Alabama Governor Robert Bentley (R) has issued a state of emergency for unusual winter weather. Meteorologists are predicting snow and ice on Tuesday for much of Central Alabama.

Governor Bentley said, “Alabama recently experienced a winter weather situation two weeks ago, and we are again bracing for more winter weather to impact the state over the coming days,” Governor Robert Bentley said. “By issuing a State of Emergency, we are taking precautions to protect Alabamians. I have directed all state agencies to take necessary actions to be prepared to respond to the anticipated winter conditions across northern Alabama. We will actively monitor the storm as it begins to hit the state, and are prepared to respond to any requests for assistance.”

Emergency Management Agency Director Art Faulkner said, “With a level two activation Tuesday morning at the State Emergency Operations Center, we have all the necessary staff and resources ready to assist Alabamians as needed. However, it is just as important for the people of Alabama to stay weather aware during this potential winter weather event and make sure they avoid travel if they are in an area with dangerous road conditions.”

Tuesday night at 9:00 p.m., the National Weather Service offices in Alabama, has issued a Winter Weather Warning for St. Clair, Calhoun, Tuscaloosa, Walker, Blount, Etowah, Jefferson, Marion, Lamar, Fayette, Sumter, Cleburne, and other counties along the I-20 corridor.

Various portions of the State are expected to experience sleet, snow and freezing rain beginning Monday evening and lasting until Wednesday.  The Alabama Emergency Management Agency is activating the State Emergency Operations Center in order to monitor the storm and assist county Emergency Management Agencies as needed. State law enforcement agencies have coordinated state resources in order to respond to stranded drivers. Alabama National Guard units have been alerted to prepare to respond to any emergency requests for assistance. Shelters opened on Tuesday night in many Alabama Counties.

St. Clair EMA wrote on Facebook, “The multiple rounds of winter weather will make travel very hazardous across much of north central Alabama. Sporadic power outages may be possible for locations that receive the highest totals of freezing rain.  A Winter Storm Warning means significant amounts of snow… sleet… and ice are expected or occurring. This will make travel very hazardous or impossible.”

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Many public schools in the area have already announced that they will be closed on Tuesday.

The State of Emergency will be effective at 6:00 a.m. Tuesday.

Brandon Moseley is a former reporter at the Alabama Political Reporter.

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