States of emergency in TN, AL, GA - | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

States of emergency in TN, AL, GA

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CHATTANOOGA (WRCB/AP) – States of emergency have been declared in Tennessee, Georgia and Alabama.

All three governor had the same message for their residents: stay home.

Tennessee Gov. Phil Bredesen has declared a state of emergency because several inches of snow had fallen in some areas.

Snow was still coming down Sunday night and 2 to 6 inches could be on the ground before the storm that's plaguing much of the South ends. That could be even more in the southern part of the state or the higher elevations.

Tennessee Emergency Management Agency spokesman Jeremy Heidt says the snow is starting to accumulate, especially in the western part of the state. He says there have been numerous accidents but had not heard of anything serious.

Greg Cole, spokesman for the National Weather Service office in Morristown, Tenn., said eastern Tennessee can expect 4 to 6 inches of snow, with the heaviest falling in the early hours of Monday morning.

In Georgia, Governor Sunny Perdue declared a state of emergency ahead of the severe weather.

The declaration will allow the state to activate emergency plans and call of added help from GEMA and Homeland Security if needed.

"For the past several days GEMA / Homeland Security has been actively monitoring and preparing for the impacts of a significant winter weather event," said GEMA Director Charley English in a release Sunday night.. "We continue to coordinate with the National Weather Service and all local emergency management agencies, in addition to the appropriate state agencies, Georgia Power Company and the Federal Emergency Management Agency."

Alabama Governor Bob Riley has declared a state of emergency in Alabama as a severe weather front moved into the state.

Riley made the announcement Sunday afternoon as the storm expected to dump snow and ice across the state moved closer. He said the state Department of Transportation had readied snow and salt trucks to help clear icy roads and state troopers were working 12-hour shifts to help motorists.

Riley asked all residents to stay home Sunday night and Monday unless necessary.

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