Southern states prepare for disruptive storm

Laura Donovan Contributor
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Several states across the South braced Sunday for a major winter storm that was expected to bring snow and freezing rain, disrupting air travel and inaugural activities for Georgia’s new governor.

The National Weather Service issued winter storm warnings from eastern Texas to North Carolina, with ice-storm warnings for Mississippi and Alabama. The bad weather approached just over two weeks after a heavy storm brought rare Christmas Day snow to many parts of the region.

Governors in both Alabama and Louisiana issued emergency declarations. Alabama Gov. Bob Riley asked residents to avoid leaving their homes, unless necessary, Sunday night and Monday. Officials across the Southprepared snow and salt trucks and power crews prepared for outages common in ice storms. Many schools canceled Monday classes.

Mississippi officials said Sunday that ice had already accumulated on roadways, bridges and overpasses in several counties.

In Atlanta, a morning prayer breakfast and evening black-tie gala planned around Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal’s inauguration on Monday were canceled, amid predictions of two to four inches of snow Sunday night followed by steady freezing rain on Monday. Mr. Deal will still be sworn in Monday afternoon, but urged Georgians to stay off the roads.

The expected precipitation triggered hundreds of flight cancellations at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, the world’s busiest airport and the biggest hub of Delta Air Lines Inc.

Full story: Southern states brace for disruptive storm