Isabel shuts down DC, Chambliss comes home - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Isabel shuts down DC, Chambliss comes home

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September 18, 2003

Albany-- Hurricane Isabel is making Washington DC look a lot like a ghost town. The city has shut down its metro system in preparation for the storm.

The transit service began turning away paying customers on buses and trains at eleven Thursday morning. With mass transit closed, Mayor Tony Williams realized it would be tough for the city's employees to get home, so he closed down government offices.

The federal government and business officials decided to do the same thing and shut down most of their offices for the day too. The national weather center predicts DC will get tropical storm conditions producing four to six inches of rain, with wind gusts topping 70 miles per hour.

The decision to evacuate businesses in the Washington DC area, has sent a senator our way. Senator Saxby Chambliss is back home in Moultrie. He's taking this opportunity of being home during the week to spend time with his family and watch high school football. Chambliss says, "When I talked to my staff this morning they said it started raining and the wind had started picking up."

Chambliss chose to avoid the severe weather by coming home to Moultrie's sunshine. He smiles and says, "It's a beautiful day here."

Washington D.C. is eerily empty. Chambliss adds, "When it became obvious that the storm was going to into North Carolina, through Virginia and head right toward Washington, leadership decided to basically shut down the government."

The senator will take advantage of being home during the week. He says, "The most important thing I get to do though, my little 7-year-old grandson, John, has a soccer game to go to. It's going to be the first time to see John play soccer this year. Plus I get to see the Packers play Dougherty tomorrow [Friday] and I didn't think that was going to happen."

Even though Chambliss is enjoying the nice southwest Georgia weather, he hopes he will be back at work in DC by Monday afternoon.

Senator Chambliss says missing the next few days of work will put him behind schedule. An important immigration hearing scheduled for Thursday afternoon had to be canceled and moved to a later date.

posted at 4:30PM by kathryn.simmons@walb.com

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