The cold front that pushed thunderstorms and damaging winds across north Georgia Tuesday afternoon brought freezing temperatures and snow flurries to metro Atlanta before daybreak Wednesday.
An area of snow moved through Atlanta around 3 a.m. Wednesday, according to the National Weather Service, but no snow accumulations were reported in the metro area..
There were, however, light accumulations of snow overnight in northeast Georgia, causing some travel problems. The snow was continuing to fall in some areas at 9 a.m., when the National Weather Service issued a winter storm warning for several counties.
The warning, in effect through 7 p.m. Wednesday, called for 2 to 3 inches of snow accumulation in Murray, Fannin, Gilmer, Union, Towns, Pickens, Dawson, Lumpkin and White counties, with up to 5 inches of snow at the higher elevations.
Teri Pope, a spokeswoman for the state Department of Transportation, said crews began plowing snow in Towns County around 1 a.m., and by 3, the snow had spread into Lumpkin, Rabun, Union, Dawson, Habersham and White counties.
Pope said just after 9 a.m. that the DOT had a dozen trucks working those counties, plowing the snow and spreading a salt and stone mix to give drivers better traction.
“The crews will continue monitoring road conditions, checking bridges and known trouble spots for black ice,” Pope said. “Trucks are removing snow and slush as needed.”
“Please do not travel in the mountain counties this morning if possible,” she advised.
Schools were closed Wednesday in Dawson, Rabun, Towns and Lumpkin counties, while classes were delayed two hours in White, Fannin and Union counties.
Early morning temperatures across the mountain counties, where a winter weather advisory was in effect, included 27 in Blairsville and 28 in Blue Ridge.
Metro temperatures at 6 a.m. ranged from 31 in Alpharetta, Marietta and Dunwoody and 32 at Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport to 34 in Peachtree City.
A wind advisory remained in effect Wednesday for gusts up to 40 mph.
Those strong winds brought down trees in several areas, including one huge tree that crushed several cars at an apartment complex on Collier Road in northwest Atlanta.
One of those cars was a 2010 Volkswagen Jetta belonging to Robert Coletti, who was visiting his brother at the Collier Green complex when the tree fell around 10 p.m.
“It sounded like a washing machine falling down the stairs,” Coletti said.
”Considering that I bought the car less than a month ago, it was a huge pit in my stomach,” he told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “Because of the way the roof is caved in, I would guess that it is totaled.”
Coletti, a part time musician, went out Wednesday morning to check on his trombone, which was inside the crushed car.
“My trombone is okay, that’s the good news, because I don’t have insurance on this,” he said
The wind gusts also caused scattered power outages. Georgia Power reported just before 7 a.m. that 3,600 customers statewide were without electricity, with 2,800 off those outages in metro Atlanta.
In DeKalb County, LaVista Road was blocked near Briarcliff Road at 7:30 a.m. while utitlity crews worked to repair power lines that were brought down by a falling tree.
The flurries had ended across Atlanta by 6 a.m., leaving skies clear just before daybreak Wednesday, but another brief burst of snow was moved through the northern suburbs around 7:30. There was also snow still falling across extreme north Georgia around daybreak.
Channel 2 Action News meteorologist Karen Minton said Wednesday afternoon would be windy and cold, with highs only in the mid-40s.
The rest of the week will be sunny, with afternoon highs reaching the mid-50s Thursday, low 60s Friday and mid-60s Saturday and Sunday. Overnight lows should be in the 30s the rest of the week, Minton said.
Staff photographer John Spink contributed to this article.
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