FORSYTH COUNTY, Ga. – Emergency management in Forsyth County was in full effect. Things got bad around noon Tuesday, Jan. 28 and lasted pretty much until 3 p.m. Jan. 29.
The Forsyth County Fire Department responded to a total of 52 incidents, 15 were medical emergencies, 22 motor vehicle accidents and four were investigating smoke calls, one was a vehicle fire and the others were miscellaneous calls, including a water leak inside a structure.
During about the same time frame, the Forsyth County Sheriff's Office attended to 196 accident calls, 155 road obstructions and 94 assist motorist.
About 1:45 p.m. on Tuesday, the Forsyth County Emergency Management Operations Center off Settingdown Road was brought up to level 2 status.
From noon until midnight on Tuesday, Jan. 28, the Forsyth County 911 Center received a total of 842 calls for service. That number includes 234 officer-initiated calls.
From midnight Wednesday until 2:45 p.m. this Jan. 29, the 911 Center received 129 calls for service.
In preparing for the inclement weather operations, the 911 Center brought in six additional staff members.
Emergency service personnel were brought in for support, which was kept live until 2:30 p.m. Jan. 29.
“We shut it down to basically on-call, or as needed status,” said Div. Chief Jason Shivers, of the Forsyth County Fire Department. “Basically what we did from the emergency operations center was manage the needs of the county, working very close with all the agencies you would expect to provide critical support to the community.”
That included the Forsyth County Sheriff's Office, Forsyth County Roads and Bridges Department, state Department of Transportation and other emergency services.
Emergency calls after 3 p.m. Wednesday Jan. 29 had dropped to less than normal because people were staying indoors.
“We can attribute that to people doing exactly what we'd asked – staying home,” Shivers said. “That eased the burden on the emergency services and the road departments and allowed us to continue to work on the roads to make them passable.”
Thursday morning, Shivers recommends people wait until the sun has a chance to get up and that people are not driving in the dark. With Forsyth County Schools canceled and late starts for many businesses, less traffic is expected on Thursday.
The county’s Roads and Bridges personnel have remained busy throughout this weather event.
While planning and preparation for potential inclement weather had been taking place over the past several days, Forsyth County Roads and Bridges transitioned into inclement weather operations around 1 p.m. Tuesday.
The county has five sand/salt trucks (four of which are also outfitted with snow plows) and three motor graders with blades to scrape the roads.