Weather forecasters and local authorities are preparing for possible severe weather across South Georgia late tonight and early Saturday.
A storm system across the Plains states is pulling moist air north across the South, said Kelly Godsey, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service’s Tallahassee, Fla., office.
There’s a “good chance” of severe weather tonight and early Saturday across South Georgia, he said, though the worst storms are expected west of Valdosta.
“The greatest threat is for damaging straight-line winds and isolated tornadoes,” Godsey said.
There is a 15-20 percent probability of severe weather for Valdosta, he said. While that may seem like a low probability, the storm system could be a “high-impact event,” Godsey said.
The storm front is expected to create problems for Lowndes County from 4-10 a.m. Saturday, he said.
The weather service conducted a web briefing with area officials Thursday to update emergency managers on the threat, according to both Godsey and Paige Dukes, the public information officer for Lowndes County.
While there is no cause for alarm, people may want to secure outdoor items, patio furniture and plants while providing a safe place for pets, Dukes said. She also recommends assessing any areas that might have trees or limbs that could have been weakened during previous storms and could cause potential damage during a wind event. A line of severe storms that moved through South Georgia early last week toppled many trees and caused some damage across the region.
Up-to-date information on current weather,
including storm watches and warnings, are available through weather alert radios available at many local stores. These radios can be set to sound an alarm whenever the National Weather Service issues storm warnings for a particular area.
Dukes urges Lowndes County citizens to sign up for the county’s CodeRed Emergency Alert system, which is free and may be signed up for at the county’s website, www.lowndescounty.com. The CodeRed system automatically places phone calls to citizens in the path of severe weather just moments after the weather service issues a warning. Registration takes only a couple of minutes and begins by clicking on the black and red CodeRed icon. To sign up for CodeRed by phone, citizens may call 229-671-2400.
On the Web
National Weather Service Tallahassee office:
Lowndes County’s CodeRed system: