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Two inches of snow in Atlanta

February 05, 2014 - It honestly was pretty bad.

That's the report from Goodrich native Rob Freer regarding the late January snow storm that dumped a minuscule, by Michigan standards, two inches of snow the Atlanta area.

"The economy is very good down here," said Freer, 27, a 2005 Goodrich High School graduate who moved to Kennesaw, Ga., about 30 miles north of Atlanta, in 2010 for employment. "I like working in the Atlanta area—it's a very busy community."

Like many Michigan natives, Freer had started to grow accustomed to the rather mild southern United States winters.

"It's February 4 and 50 degrees here in Kennesaw—people wear coats down here calling it cold," he laughed. "Honestly, in the years I've lived here it's been a lot easier to deal with the heat in summer than Michigan winters."

During the week of Jan. 26-30, Freer and about 6 million or so that live in the Atlanta area of central Georgia, experienced a little of what residents of the northern states have been contending with since about October.

According to the National Weather Service, the Atlanta area's warm ground, typical in the southern states, melted a few inches of snow, but followed by cold air dropping temperatures from the mid 60s to low 20s overnight turning the slushy snow into ice. Then a couple inches of snow fell on top of the ice during the middle of a work day on Tuesday. The combination was a disaster for residents where the equipment to clear and salt every single road in an area is non-existent.

"My office called me around noon on Tuesday (Jan. 28) when there were a few snow flurries and said just stay home. Then everyone was sent home. Atlanta does not have salt trucks like we do in Michigan. All the main roads were just gridlock—the traffic was heavy and the main roads were just stopped. It was a mess."

"A friend of mine lives about five mile from work and it took him eight hours to get home," he said. "Some of my co-workers who are truck drivers hung out in the diners for two days waiting to get going again. I know people who spent the night in the aisle of a Publix food store. It was either risk running out of gas and freeze being stuck, or hightail it to some building."

"It was a combination of not knowing how to drive on bad roads and not being prepared for the storm," said Freer. "We have two inches of snow everyday in the winter up in Goodrich it seems—everyone just seemed to freak out."

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