While Georgia has been spared the devastating impact of Hurricane Sandy, the state is feeling its wrath in less direct ways.
As some Georgians remain stranded in the Northeast because of flight cancellations, others are leaving the state and heading north to help those affected. As of Monday, the Georgia Emergency Management Agency had not yet been called to assist in storm clean-up, but officials said they are preparing for such requests as the historic weather system rolls through.
A snapshot of Sandy’s effect on Georgia:
Thousands of flights were canceled in preparation for Sandy, impacting travelers at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport and beyond. Delta Air Lines officials canceled all flights to the New York City area and limited flying to other East Coast areas, according to the airline’s website. The airline expects for some flights to resume Tuesday at some hubs. In total, Delta canceled roughly 2,500 flights scheduled to travel from Sunday to Tuesday.
By 2 p.m. Monday, Southwest Airlines had canceled nearly 900 flights scheduled from Sunday through mid-day Wednesday, while AirTran Airways canceled about 275 flights during the same time period, according to its website. Hurricane Sandy has impacted operations at 16 airports serving both airlines in the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic.
Roughly 130 employees from 16 Electric Membership Corporation units in Georgia are assisting states affected by Sandy. Crews began leaving last weekend and are expected to stay one to two weeks, according to the Georgia EMC Training, Safety and Education Vice President Jim Wright. Crews will help clear trees, replace broken poles, string new wire and repair individual service to those who lose power in the storm.
Three Georgia high school mock trial teams are stranded in the New York area due to flight cancellations. Jonesboro High School, Grady High School and the Atlanta International School were due to return home from New York Sunday after competing in a world mock trial championship.
Emory University announced an extension of one application deadline from Nov. 1 to Nov. 5. Students will still know by Dec. 15 if they are admitted to the school. University of Georgia and Georgia Tech early action admissions application deadlines were Oct. 15 and thus are not impacted by Sandy. UGA did extend from Nov. 1 to Nov. 5 the deadline for the Foundation Fellowship applications. A deadline at Agnes Scott College is Nov. 15, but officials said they “will be flexible when the date approaches.”
A spokesman for Atlanta-based SunTrust Banks, which has a network stretching from Florida through the mid-Atlantic, said Monday it had closed about 275 branch offices in Virginia, Maryland and the Washington, D.C. area.
UPS has temporarily halted deliveries to locations in nine states and Washington, D.C., a spokeswoman said Monday.
As of Monday afternoon, 27 Home Depot stores were closed and more closures were expected. The company has 441 stores that were expected to experience tropical storm-force winds and 18 that were expected to experience hurricane-force winds, a spokeswoman said.
Emergency management officials from Chatham County, Savannah and Tybee Island areas reported no weekend damage from the storm.
Staff writers Arielle Kass, Scott Trubey, Laura Diamond and Marcus Garner contributed to this report.