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www.wmfd.com - The mayor of Atlanta says there is "shared responsibility" for the Tuesday traffic nightmare which trapped some people on road for more than half a day. }}" />

Officials Seek Recovery After Atlanta's Traffic Nightmare

Story By: Larry Stine



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  Original Published: 1/31/2014

The mayor of Atlanta says there is "shared responsibility" for the Tuesday traffic nightmare which trapped some people on road for more than half a day. As the clean-up continues, Andrew Spencer reports many people are questioning why Georgia wasn't better prepared. Drivers head back to their cars, after a few inches of snow brought the conry's ninth-biggest metropolitan area to a screeching halt. Many drivers spent more than 12 hours stuck in traffic. Others with no food or water or access to a bathroom, or those whose car batteries died or who ran out of gas, simply left their vehicles behind. "My drive shaft blew out, but my engine was still good," says Lorenzo Jaackson. "I had gas, so I could sleep with my heat on. A lot of these folks out here didn't even have heat." Abandoned cars and trucks only added to the problems, blocking roads and freeway off-ramps, but it's hard to blame drivers who left their cars to sleep on the floor at Home Depot or at a CVS Pharmacy. Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed doesn't think the city should be shouldering all of the blame. "I want to state clearly I don't have jurisdiction to clear interstate highways in the city of Atlanta; I'm responsible for the streets that are in the city of Atlanta," says Reed. He and Governor Nathan Deal have said more than 1-million people trying to leave the city at the same time, Tuesday afternoon, resulted in massive gridlock, which blocked Department of Transportation crews from doing much about it. Others, such as former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliana, says the city and the state should have been better prepared. "Relentless preparation is the key to emergency performance, whether you're talking about a terrorist attack, you're talking about a snow storm," Giuliani said. "The state should have known what it was doing. The city should have known what it was doing." Depending on where drivers abandoned their vehicles, officials are asking them to go to one of two staging areas, where they'll get a ride to their cars. They'll also get some gas, if they need it, or a jump start for their battery.

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