GEMA warns Bulldog fans to 'hunker down' in Athens amid winter storm

Georgia offensive lineman Warren Ericson (50) and Alabama wide receiver Slade Bolden (18) play during the second half of the Southeastern Conference championship NCAA college football game, Saturday, Dec. 4, 2021, in Atlanta. (Brynn Anderson/AP Photo)

State emergency management officials say there’s still “a lot of uncertainty” surrounding the winter storm in store for north and central Georgia this weekend.

As the Georgia Bulldogs celebrate their national championship win in Athens Saturday, GEMA is warning fans not to drive home in hazardous conditions.

Forecasters with the National Weather Service in Peachtree City say the mix of freezing rains, snow and sleet means black ice will likely build up on roadways — less noticeable to drivers.

James Stallings, director of the Georgia Emergency Management Agency, said during a news conference with Gov. Brian Kemp that those who travel to Athens, should be prepared to hunker down for a few nights.

Forecasters project a quarter inch of ice could accumulate over the weekend. If that happens, Georgians should also be prepared for widespread power outages and numerous road closures.

Georgia Department of Transportation crews began brine treatments Friday, and will continue prioritizing interstates, state routes, bridges and overpasses through Sunday.

Lily Oppenheimer contributed to this report.