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Posted: February 12, 2014

GEMA: Shelters open to aid storm victims


(ATLANTA) -- As winter weather conditions through the upper half of Georgia continue to worsen, the Georgia Emergency Management Agency/Homeland Security (GEMA) in coordination with the Georgia Department of Natural Resources (DNR), Georgia National Guard, Georgia Department of Human Services, the American Red Cross, Salvation Army and other organizations and local governments, are opening shelters to aid those displaced or stranded by the storm.

The National Weather Service (NWS) is reporting freezing temperatures across most of north Georgia to include the Atlanta metro area. It is expected to dip below freezing as far south as La Grange to Thomaston to Macon to Dublin and Swainsboro by late this morning.

There are dozens of shelters now open or on standby at area Red Cross facilities, DNR state parks and National Guard facilities. The primary purpose is to provide residents with a warm safe place to stay and as many necessities as possible to help them ride out the dangerous wintery conditions

We strongly urge citizens to stay where they are if at all possible. However, if they must seek shelter, they are encouraged to bring these recommended items:

  • Change of clothing
  • Blankets, Sleeping bags, Pillows
  • Hygiene or sanitary products
  • Prescriptions and over-the-counter medication
  • Baby food/formula, diapers, wipes, teething gel, ointment

Do not bring:

  • Firearms
  • Illegal drugs and alcohol

To help Georgians find the nearest shelter option, GEMA has created a map with real-time information. To find a shelter nearest your location, log on to, and click on the Latest Emergency Information link, or use the American Red Cross Shelter app.

To learn about the recommended items you should have on-hand to shelter in place, visit

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