Friday, February 14 2014, 05:22 PM EST
Emergency Responders Prepare, Warn Residents Of Conditions
Hamilton County emergency responders are preparing themselves and others for winter conditions that may worsen Wednesday.
Emergency officials said they are mainly watching for power outages, and disaster volunteers said the best thing for residents to do is use common sense to keep their families safe.
Workers from every department broke down the best and worst conditions at the Hamilton County Emergency Operations Center, and even American Red Cross Volunteers are getting involved.
"We have volunteers that are at the EOC. We have volunteers on standby," said Greg Waite, of American Red Cross in Chattanooga. "All of our trailers have been readied. Our shelters are on standby."
The Red Cross has everything they need for a shelter, including tables, food and water. One of the biggest concerns for everyone is ice and possible power outages, officials said.
"We're expecting power outages. We've already seen them in Georgia," said Waite. "We want to make sure people understand your best safety measure at this point is to shelter in place."
TDOT crews got a jump start on the delayed action by taking care of the roads before the snow hit.
"We've been lucky this morning. Roads have been clear. We didn't have any problems during the commute. Everybody was able to come and go as they needed to," said Bob Van Horn, the traffic manager with TDOT.
Van Horn said if they do experience a power outage, they can continue to help.
"We're self-contained here. We have two generators. So, if our power goes off, we're still able to function as long as the field devices are functioning," said Van Horn.
To avoid what happened two weeks ago, officials said they also advised people to fill up their gas tanks and pack some blankets.
Emergency responders said they aren't sure exactly what they are going to face even with the forecasts, so crews will continue to treat the roads to keep people safe.
By Briona Arradondo