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Daily Update Oct 17Current Situation: The Georgia Forestry Commission (GFC) Type 3 Incident Management Team (IMT) is managing response and recovery efforts related to the clearing of debris from public roadways, public infrastructures, facilities and property to assist power companies with the restoration of electrical power to communities. The Incident Command Post is located in Tifton, Georgia. Kris Butler is the Incident Commander. 10 GFC chainsaw strike teams of 90 personnel are assigned. 20 personnel assigned to GFC dozers and 25 personnel are assigned to the GFC Incident Management Team. This will be the final update provided by the GFC IMT.

Partners and Cooperators: Georgia Emergency Management and Homeland Security Agency (GEMA/HS), County Emergency Management Agency (EMA) Directors, Georgia Department of Transportation (GDOT), Georgia Department of Natural Resources (DNR), Georgia Department of Corrections (DOC), Georgia Department of Agriculture (DOA), Georgia Search and Rescue (GSARS) and electrical power companies.

Planned Actions: Chainsaw strike teams are concentrating on clearing debris in Seminole County where the GFC IMT is working closely in cooperation with the local electrical power company to help clear the roads so power can be restored as quickly as possible.

  • Seminole County, Division A – 3 GFC chainsaw strike teams, 5 GDOT teams, 7 DNR teams working in 2 State Parks, and 6 DOC teams.
  • Early and Miller Counties, Division B – 3 GFC chainsaw strike teams, 2 GDOT teams, and 2 DNR teams.
  • Baker, Calhoun, Crisp, Colquitt, Dougherty, Grady, Lee, Mitchell, Thomas and Worth Counties, Division C – 1 GFC chainsaw strike team, 1 GFC dozer strike team, 3 GDOT teams, and 5 DOC teams.
  • Decatur County, Division D – 2 GFC chainsaw strike teams, 1 GFC dozer strike team, 4 GDOT teams, and 8 DOC teams.

Crews will complete these assignments today and some will begin to demobilize this afternoon with a goal of having the entire IMT demobilized by Friday afternoon. Remaining debris clearance work will transition to the local district of the GDOT. The GDOT will manage debris clearing operations through the remainder of the declared state of emergency which runs through November 6, 2018.

Burn Permits: The GFC has resumed issuing permits in all counties for all types of burning EXCEPT Decatur, Seminole, Miller, Early, Mitchell and Baker Counties. For these 6 counties only hand piled natural vegetation (yard debris) permits/notification of intent to burn will be allowed at this time.

History: Hurricane Michael entered Georgia as a major hurricane on October 10th from the southwest near the Lake Seminole area where the Georgia, Florida and Alabama state lines converge. It continued as a hurricane with sustained winds above 74 mph into Thursday morning, October 11th, until reaching Bleckley and Twiggs Counties. Several tornadoes were reported in areas away from the hurricane’s main core path. A tremendous amount of downed trees and debris exists in areas where there is limited or restricted access by roads. Some local flooding has occurred and streams, creek and rivers have high and swift water. Several communities remain without power due to damaged poles, lines and substations damaged by high winds. Safety of personnel is of concern due to trees in tension that may snap or break, downed power lines, smoke from unauthorized debris burning, mold, insect bites and bee stings. A preliminary damage assessment shows approximately 3 million acres of timber damage with assessments continuing. A basic assessment of damaged community trees in public areas was conducted by GFC’s community foresters. The most significant damage was noted in and around the communities of Blakely, Colquitt, Donalsonville, Bainbridge, and Albany. A major disaster has been declared for Baker, Decatur, Dougherty, arly, Miller and Seminole Counties. Assistance is available for individuals in these counties, and in 31 counties for public assistance. More information is available at DisasterAssistance.gov or by calling 800-621-3362.

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Daily Update Oct 16.jpg

Current Situation: The Georgia Forestry Commission (GFC) Type 3 Incident Management Team (IMT) is managing response and recovery efforts related to the clearing of debris from public roadways, public infrastructures, facilities and property to assist power companies with the restoration of electrical power to communities. The Incident Command Post is located in Tifton, Georgia. Kris Butler is the Incident Commander. 10 GFC chainsaw strike teams of 90 personnel are assigned. 20 personnel assigned to GFC dozers and 25 personnel are assigned to the GFC Incident Management Team. Safety of personnel is of concern due to trees in tension that may snap or break, downed power lines, smoke from unauthorized debris burning, mold, insect bites and bee stings.

Partners and Cooperators: Georgia Emergency Management and Homeland Security Agency (GEMA/HS), County Emergency Management Agency (EMA) Directors, Georgia Department of Transportation (GDOT), Georgia Department of Natural Resources (DNR), Georgia Department of Corrections (DOC), Georgia Department of Agriculture (DOA), Georgia Search and Rescue (GSARS) and electrical power companies.

Planned Actions: Chainsaw strike teams within Early, Decatur and Seminole Counties were prioritized according to a detailed road map assessment showing the location of the most debris in the Southwest Georgia region. All roads are open in Miller County and more crews are being redirected from less affected counties to harder hit areas today. GDOT, DNR and DOC teams are also assisting with debris removal.

  • Seminole County, Division A – 4 GFC chainsaw strike teams, 4 GDOT teams, 6 DNR teams, and 6 DOC teams.
  • Early and Miller Counties, Division B – 3 GFC chainsaw strike teams, 2 GDOT teams, and 2 DNR teams.
  • Clay, Calhoun, Dougherty, Worth, Lee, Terrell, Crisp and Turner, Baker, Mitchell, Colquitt, Grady, and Thomas Counties, Division C – 1 GFC chainsaw strike team, 1 GFC dozer strike team, 3 GDOT teams, and 5 DOC teams.
  • Decatur County, Division D – 2 GFC chainsaw strike teams and 1 dozer strike team, 5 DOT teams, and 8 DOC teams.

Burn Permits Temporarily Suspended: The GFC has temporarily suspended the issuing of burning permits within the following counties: Baker, Calhoun, Clay, Colquitt, Crisp, Decatur, Dougherty, Early, Grady, Lee, Miller, Mitchell, Randolph, Seminole, Terrell, Thomas, Worth.

 History: Hurricane Michael entered Georgia as a major hurricane on October 10th from the southwest near the Lake Seminole area where the Georgia, Florida and Alabama state lines converge. It continued as a hurricane with sustained winds above 74 mph into Thursday morning, October 11th, until reaching Bleckley and Twiggs Counties. Several tornadoes were reported in areas away from the hurricane’s main core path. A tremendous amount of downed trees and debris currently exists where there is limited or restricted access by roads. Some local flooding has occurred and streams, creek and rivers have high and swift water. A preliminary damage assessment is showing approximately 3 million acres of timber has been damaged. Timber damage assessment is continuing with the arrival of additional resources today. Several communities remain without power due to damaged poles, lines and substations damaged by high winds. A basic assessment of damaged community trees in public areas has been conducted by GFC’s community foresters. The most significant damage was noted in and around the communities of Blakely, Colquitt, Donalsonville, Bainbridge, and Albany.

A major disaster has been declared for Baker, Decatur, Dougherty, Early, Miller and Seminole Counties. Assistance is available for individuals in these counties, and in 31 counties for public assistance. More information is available at DisasterAssistance.gov or by calling 800-621-3362.

Daily Update Oct 15

Current Situation: The Georgia Forestry Commission (GFC) Type 3 Incident Management Team (IMT) is managing response and recovery efforts related to the clearing of debris from public roadways, public infrastructures, facilities and property to assist power companies with the restoration of electrical power to communities. The Incident Command Post is located in Tifton, Georgia. Kris Butler is the Incident Commander. There is a tireless effort of continued commitment from the Georgia Forestry Commission staff, many of whom were impacted personally but have not yet returned home.

  • 10 GFC chainsaw strike teams of 90 personnel are assigned. 20 personnel assigned to GFC dozers and 25 personnel are assigned to the GFC Incident Management Team.

Partners and Cooperators: Georgia Emergency Management and Homeland Security Agency (GEMA/HS), County Emergency Management Agency (EMA) Directors, Georgia Department of Transportation (GDOT), Georgia Department of Natural Resources (DNR), Georgia Department of Corrections (DOC), Georgia Department of Agriculture (DOA), Georgia Search and Rescue (GSARS) and electrical power companies.

Planned Actions: The GFC IMT is coordinating assignments with the GDOT, DNR, DOC and GSARS chainsaw strike teams. The teams will continue to focus on clearing state and county roads as a priority in Seminole and Decatur Counties, and Early and Miller Counties, the hardest hit counties in southwest Georgia. Four divisions include:

  • Division A – Seminole
  • Division B – Early, Miller
  • Division C – Clay, Calhoun, Dougherty, Worth, Lee, Terrell, Crisp and Turner, Baker, Mitchell, Colquitt, Grady, Thomas
  • Division D – Decatur

An additional 3 teams from GSARS will assist today in Seminole County, and 19 DOT crews will join GFC forces across the region to focus specifically with electrical municipal corporations on clearing debris from utility rights-of-way. GFC’s helicopter and air operations resources are being utilized for a data collection flight to help identify and map road closures.

Safety of personnel is of concern due to trees in tension that may snap or break, downed power lines, smoke from unauthorized debris burning, mold, insect bites and bee stings. In remote areas, there are gas shortages. Businesses are remaining closed until power is restored.

Crews are assisting people on private property if lives are at risk or people are trapped and need medical attention. The Incident Management Team will continue to reach out to County EMA directors and utility companies.

Burn Permits Temporarily Suspended: The Georgia Forestry Commission has temporarily suspended the issuing of burning permits within the following counties: Baker, Calhoun, Clay, Colquitt, Crisp, Decatur, Dougherty, Early, Grady, Lee, Miller, Mitchell, Randolph, Seminole, Terrell, Thomas, Worth.

History: Hurricane Michael entered Georgia as a major hurricane on October 10th from the southwest near the Lake Seminole area where the Georgia, Florida and Alabama state lines converge. It continued as a hurricane with sustained winds above 74 mph into Thursday morning, October 11th, until reaching Bleckley and Twiggs Counties. Several tornadoes were reported in areas away from the hurricane’s main core path. A tremendous amount of downed trees and debris currently exist where there is limited or restricted access by roads. Some local flooding has occurred and streams, creek and rivers have high and swift water. A preliminary damage assessment is showing approximately 3 million acres of timber has been damaged. Numerous communities remain without power due to damaged poles, lines and substations damaged by high winds. A basic assessment of damaged community trees in public areas is being conducted by GFC’s community foresters.

Daily Update Oct 14

Current Situation: The Georgia Forestry Commission (GFC) Type 3 Incident Management Team (IMT) is managing response and recovery efforts related to the clearing of debris from public roadways, public infrastructures, facilities and property to assist power companies with the restoration of electrical power to communities. The Incident Command Post is located in Tifton, Georgia. Kris Butler is the Incident Commander. There is a tireless effort of continued commitment from the Georgia Forestry Commission staff, many of whom were impacted personally but have not yet returned home.

  • 10 GFC chainsaw strike teams of 90 personnel are assigned. 20 personnel assigned to GFC dozers and 25 personnel are assigned to the GFC Incident Management Team.

Partners and Cooperators: Georgia Emergency Management and Homeland Security Agency (GEMA/HS), County Emergency Management Agency (EMA) Directors, Georgia Department of Transportation (GDOT), Georgia Department of Natural Resources (DNR), Georgia Department of Corrections (DOC), Georgia Department of Agriculture (DOA), and electrical power companies.

Planned Actions: Today the GFC IMT assumed responsibility for coordinating assignments with the GDOT, DNR and DOC chainsaw strike teams. The teams will continue to focus on clearing state and county roads as a priority in the hardest hit counties in southwest Georgia based on current damage assessments. Three divisions include:

  • Division A – Seminole, Decatur, Grady and Thomas Counties
  • Division B – Early, Baker, Miller, and Mitchell and Colquitt Counties
  • Division C – Clay, Calhoun, Dougherty, Worth, Lee, Terrell, Crisp and Turner

Debris clearing teams from the GDOT are being released from less-affected areas to assist with this effort in Southwest Georgia as they are available. These teams consist of sawyers, loaders, dump trucks, backhoes and excavators.

Safety of personnel is of concern due to trees in tension that may snap or break, downed power lines, smoke from unauthorized debris burning, mold, insect bites and bee stings. In remote areas, there are gas shortages. Businesses are remaining closed until power is restored.

Crews are assisting people on private property if lives are at risk or people are trapped and need medical attention. The Incident Management Team will continue to reach out to County EMA directors to offer assistance with debris clearing on county roads now that most state roads are passable.

Burn Permits Temporarily Suspended for the following areas:

The Georgia Forestry Commission has temporarily suspended the issuing of burning permits within the 108 declared counties.

History: Hurricane Michael entered Georgia as a major hurricane on October 10th from the southwest near the Lake Seminole area where the Georgia, Florida and Alabama state lines converge. It continued as a hurricane with sustained winds above 74 mph into Thursday morning, October 11th, until reaching Bleckley and Twiggs Counties. Several tornadoes were reported in areas away from the hurricane’s main core path. A tremendous amount of downed trees and debris currently exist where there is limited or restricted access by roads. Some local flooding has occurred and streams, creek and rivers have high and swift water. A preliminary damage assessment is showing approximately 3 million acres of timber has been damaged. Numerous communities remain without power due to damaged poles, lines and substations damaged by high winds. A basic assessment of damaged community trees in public areas is being conducted by GFC’s community foresters.

Incident Management Team Information

  • Susan Granbery, Public Information Officer, 478-283-0705, sgranbery@gfc.state.ga.us
  • Follow Us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram: @GeorgiaForestryCommission #HurricaneMichael

OCTOBER 11, 2018

 

Some gradual color changes are beginning across Georgia, with upcoming weather changes expected to have an effect on color and leaf fall.

In Northwest Georgia, trees are dropping their leaves, but many are doing so without changing colors first. Yellow poplar, sycamore, and hickory are beginning to turn yellow….Red maple and sourwood are also starting to change and are showing light colors of pink and red…Dogwoods are turning a dark dull red and shedding leaves.

In Northeast Georgia the blanket of green is now giving way to some subtle reds and yellows. The yellow poplars are currently leading the charge with yellow, and maples are showing tinges of red with fully developed red tops becoming more common. Sourwood, dogwood and sumac are morphing into their reds as well. Birch and sassafras are providing additional yellows along roadsides and some sweetgums are also beginning to show everything from yellow to red to purple. Red oaks are continuing to show stress and many are browning up early.

Percentage of color change from green to date: less than 10%.

Higher than normal day and night temperatures continue to stress some trees, especially the dogwood and red oak. Forecasted lower temps this weekend should help bring about more change.

Still banking on the last week of October into the first week/weekend of November to provide the greatest color over the greatest area.

Best color this weekend is at the higher elevations including Brasstown Bald and the Richard Russell Scenic Highway. Scattered color can be enjoyed at most elevations.

 

NORTH GA Fall Leaf Report  

Date: 10/04/18 #GALeafWatch

The calendar says it is fall, but the weather says something different! Unseasonably high day and night time temperatures, along with a late season dry spell mean a slow start to foliage changes…

Northwest Georgia isn’t producing a significant amount of color change yet. You’ll find red oak, white oak, and chestnut oaks beginning to turn brown and shed their leaves without any vivid color changes. Red maple, yellow poplar, and sycamore are also dropping leaves and turning brown, but not as drastically as the oaks.

Color has begun a light sprinkle throughout Northeast Georgia, but overall things remain green. Visitors traveling to North Georgia this weekend will see maples beginning to show tinges of pink and deep reds. Dogwoods are in the early stages of turning red, but the heat has left some looking a little stressed. Same with some red oaks.

Sourwoods are showing some bright reds and burgundies – though fall webworms have hit the sourwoods hard in many areas this year.

Yellow poplars are also beginning to turn, with their golden yellows showing up here and there.

Various wildflowers can also be found along the roadsides offering patches of color ranging from bright yellows to pinks to violet.

Color change from green to date: less than 5%

Overall, the forests are still green, but emerging color can be found scattered about throughout north Georgia. While there are no “hot spots” yet, anyone looking for color should seek the higher elevations (2000’ and above) to include areas around Brasstown Bald and the Richard Russell Scenic Highway.

 Cooler temperatures over the next 15 days should usher in some good color.

The last weekend in October into the first week of November generally provide the greatest color over the greatest area.

 

14 Tallulah River Road - Rabun County 10-27-15