Even though it had lost strength by the time it reached White County, Hurricane Zeta still made its presence known on Thursday, Oct. 29.
On Wednesday, Oct. 28, a Tropical Storm warning was issued for most of north Georgia, including White County. The winds and rain from Zeta came through this morning and knocked down many trees and power lines. There was also flooding in some parts and power outages throughout the county.
White County Public Safety
White County Emergency Management has sent out a link for residents to self-report damage from Tropical Storm Zeta. Residents are encouraged to report any damages they may have received to the EMA office through these links.
At this time, a federal declaration has not been declared for White County, however, we want to be sure to collect as much data as we can in case this storm develops into federal assistance programs.
Here is the link:
October 30, 2020 7 a.m. Outage Update
As of 7 a.m., approximately 16,000 meters are without power. More trees fell overnight as the winds picked up again.
Crews worked through the night. Additional crews from south Georgia, Florida and South Carolina will arrive today to assist with restoration efforts.
HEMC offices in Clarkesville and Cleveland will open today at 8 a.m. for walk-in and drive-thru business.
Avoid downed lines and treat all as if energized. Electricity can travel through the ground 35 feet or more.
HEMC sent out the following update at 10 a.m.:
"Due to the high volume of storm related calls, both the Clarkesville and Cleveland HEMC offices will be closed today to walk-in and drive-thru traffic. We will be focusing our resources on outage calls at this time. Personnel are answering phones, if you are unable to get through, please try back later.
As of 10 a.m., outages are affecting over 26,000 of our approximately 35,000 meters. Outages are scattered throughout the service area and include transmission line outages. Restoration efforts have begun. Additional crews from Irwin EMC and Tennessee are in route.
Avoid downed lines and treat all as if energized. We encourage everyone to stay home if possible as many roads are impassable due to trees and power lines."
In White County, as of 1:45 p.m, there were 8,488 customers without power.
Report outages and hazards by phone: (706) 754 -2114, (706) 865 – 4362, (800) 640 - 6812
Georgia Power is also reporting many power outages throughout White County, along with the state of Georgia. According to Georgia Power's outage map, for the entire state of Georgia, there are 4,193 active outages affecting 514,963 customers.
As of 1:40 p.m., Georgia Power's website said there were 1,760 customers affected out of 4,575.
City of Cleveland
The City of Cleveland sent out a notice on Thursday morning asking customers to conserve water today due to city water wells being down due to power outages.
White County School System
At 2:30 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 29, the school system announced that due power outages throughout the county and at some of our schools, along with trees blocking some roadways, White County Schools will be closed for in-person and DDL students as well as staff on Friday, Oct. 30, 2020.
The White County Board of Education meeting for Thursday, Oct. 29, at 6 p.m. has been moved to the White County High School media center due to power outages at the Board of Education.
WCSS announced on Wednesday, Oct. 28, that schools were closed for students and faculty members head of the potential for dangerous weather.
This story will be updated as information becomes available.