January 29, 2018
Meriwether County Sheriff Chuck Smith provided a breakdown of the accidents and motorist assist calls that his personnel responded to over the significant weather event that occurred from January 16, 2018 through January 19, 2018.
"Our personnel responded to a variety of incidents during the inclement weather event that covered our community between the late evening hours of January 16th through the afternoon hours of January 19th, 2018. The primary calls for service were related to motor vehicle accidents in which there were 31 reported vehicle accidents in our jurisdiction. Our personnel along with the Georgia State Patrol in conjunction with one another handled these traffic accidents. There were 23 reported motorist assist calls that our personnel responded. Most of these were related to individuals who had ran off of the roadway with no or minimal damage and were unable to get the vehicle back underway. We were able to use our 4 x 4 vehicles in most of these incidents to get these vehicles back under way and clear the roadways expeditiously. This was beneficial in preventing other vehicle accidents and provided safety for those persons in the frigid weather. We also responded to 3 mechanical breakdowns due to the cold temperatures. That's a total of 57 traffic related incidents in a short period of time, not inclusive of our other non-weather related calls for service. Our personnel had to block off several roadways that were simply impassible due to the accumulated snow and ice. We had personnel out on a multiple vehicle accident on a state route when another vehicle wrecked into a power pole while we were on scene. The power pole was snapped in half. We were fortunate that no one was seriously injured in this accident, including the driver.
Motorists assisted during recent significant weather event
"Our personnel are out there 24/7 regardless of the weather conditions providing service to the community and I appreciate their effort so much. We appreciate the assistance of Meriwether County Public Works and the Meriwether County Fire Department that helped us with barricading some of the roads that were in very bad condition. We appreciate all first responders who place themselves in harm's way for the safety of others. I would like to encourage the citizens of our community if at all possible to stay off of the roadways when the traveling conditions are hazardous. This would be inclusive of snow/ice or tornado related weather events. The safety of you and your family is of utmost importance," Sheriff Chuck Smith said.
The photo shows the Meriwether Sheriff's office 4 x 4 Hummer assisting a motorist that ran off of the roadway during the Jan. 16-19 winter weather event.