Severe weather threatens south Georgia events - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Severe weather threatens south Georgia events

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Here in south Georgia, the National Weather Service is predicting storms like we had early last week with strong winds and lightening.

Those at outdoor events like Relay for Life and others are keeping a close eye on the sky. Emergency Management officials recommend everyone storm proof their yards tonight along with turning on their weather radios. If severe weather strikes, they may end this event early, sending everyone in search of shelter.

The opening ceremonies just kicked off and the bulk of Friday's event happen before 11:00 PM and they're hoping to get everything in.

The winds were blowing at Darton College as teams tried to set up for tonight's Relay for Life. They're no stranger to bad weather.

"A little rain never hurt anybody, the gusting winds, we'll see," said Adrienne Wilson, Relay for Life Co-Chairman.

Members of the Albany-Dougherty Rescue Squad will be on hand Friday night, to alert teams of severe weather.

"We're going to look at, I guess keep up with the Doppler, maybe at WALB, and just keep up with the weather," said Wilson.

In fact, Emergency Management officials are asking everyone to prepare for the storm. Just last week 8 Albany homes and vehicles were damaged when trees fell in high winds.

"Look for things in your yard that might become missiles, you may have a hanging lantern, you may have a lawn chair, hanging pots that might get blown and crash into your window," said Jim Vaught, Deputy EMA Director.

You're also encouraged to watch where you park.

"Look up and make sure there isn't a heavy limb hanging across your car that could come down on it," said Vaught.

They'll be on high alert for those camping out at Chehaw for the Native American Festival in the park's campground.

"I have a camp host and that's one of his jobs if we have severe weather coming in he'll get around to our campers and say hey guys we got something coming," said Ben Kirkland, Chehaw Natural Resource Manager.

They'll open a building if its needed. Emergency officials say if you start to see lightning and you can't count to 30 before you hear thunder it's time to get inside.

"Your life's more important than a ball game or a walk-a-thon you need to get out of the elements," said Vaught. @

Relay for Life is prepared to cut the event short if severe weather threatens the participants. It was just several years ago, that the Relay ended at 4:00 AM because teams were getting flooded out in heavy rains.

At Chehaw, the teepees do surprisingly well in severe weather, because they were engineered to handle mid-west storms.

Emergency Officials encourage anyone not signed up for their Code Red weather alerts to sign up. They also encourage everyone to turn on their weather radio tonight and to be listening for outdoor weather sirens to alert them of severe weather.

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