County and city agencies developing winter weather plan - WRCBtv.com | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

UPDATED: County and city agencies developing winter weather plan

Story by Megan Boatwright
Eyewitness News Reporter

HAMILTON COUNTY, TN. (WRCB)-- The Storm Alert 3 Team's winter forecast has public agencies working extra on a weekend. 

Our crews found a group of 30 police, fire, ambulance, hospital even EPB leaders at an emergency meeting several hours ago.

Over 15 public service agencies crowded the 911 center in Chattanooga Saturday, to listen and plan.

"We have taken action to bring in our 4-wheel drive vehicles, we've issued those around the city," says Chattanooga Fire Chief Randy Parker.

"We have five ambulances in addition to our normal fleet of 14 that we preposition around the county," says Hamilton County EMS Chief Ken Wilkerson.

"We put some of our personnel on alert in case we have a high call load," says Captain Lynn Triplett with the Hamilton County Sheriff's Office.

The voices of Channel 3's Meteorologists and the National Weather Service are clear, four to six inches of snow and freezing temperatures predicted for Hamilton County.

A forecast severe enough for these department heads to throw their emergency plans into action.

"Monday morning's going to be bad, it's always rough in the morning when people are coming to work, it's a lot more traffic," says Chief Parker.

Until then, it's preparation mode, checking equipment, installing chains and snow tires and putting every 4-wheel drive county car on alert.

Come Monday, expect ambulance crews to take you to the nearest hospital, not the one of your choice.

"We're going to be prioritizing our calls, we're going to be responding to those true emergencies," says Chief Wilkerson.

But these officials say it's not enough for them to be prepared, the public has to think ahead too.

"Between now and Monday, make sure your car is properly maintained, make sure you top off the fluids and things," says Captain Triplett.

"If you don't have to get out on the roads, don't get out on the roads," says Emergency Management Chief Bill Tittle.

Another special briefing is scheduled for Sunday afternoon.

At that point officials will make final staffing decisions.

An EPB representative says they too will position crews in problems area.

Power outages will likely depend on how much ice hits Chattanooga.

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