Prepare for Severe Weather

Inclement weather is more likely to impact your ability to operate normally.  The following information outlines the sources of communications that you may rely upon to assist you in related preparations.

The Department of Administrative Services (DOAS) will notify HR leaders by email and coordinate updates through additional communication sources as follows:

Agencies subject to State Personnel Board rules will find procedures for managing absences and compensation on the DOAS website.

Please coordinate with your internal business units to establish or update the list of employees or work groups that you deem essential to operations during inclement weather or other emergency situations.

Take a minute to review the state’s Inclement Weather Policy, including where to find out about state office closures. You might also want to review the State’s recent advisory on absences due to emergency closures.

You can also prepare for severe weather with planning and safety tips from

During unusually cold weather, temperatures can drop to single digits in parts of North Georgia and wind chills could be below zero. To avoid freezing issues at your work location and home, please review the list below prepared by DOAS Risk Management Services Division, and take the following precautionary steps, as necessary:

  1. Turn off exterior faucets: This is often overlooked as a winterizing step because it’s so simple. However, if undrained water remains in pipes in freezing temperatures, the pipes can burst as the ice expands. Disconnect your garden hoses and drain any remaining water in your exterior faucets to prevent the hassle of burst pipes this winter. Locate your water cutoffs for the building so you know where to go if there is an issue. Make sure that you have a wrench handy to cut off the water at the street if necessary. If there are out-buildings, you may want to turn off the water and open the spigots.  Use heat tape for outdoor water systems to ensure pipes stay above freezing level.
  2. Bathroom cabinets: You may need to leave your bathroom cabinets open to all the room air to keep the pipes heated. Some locations will need to leave faucets on a slow drip.
  3. Block out cold air: Keep icy drafts from chilling the air at your location. If you know of areas where drafts get in and they are close to a water source, now is the time to address them.
  4. Check your gutters: It’s a good idea to keep your gutters clear all year long, but in the winter it becomes essential. If leaves pile up in your gutters, the backup can cause melting ice and snow to spill into your attic or basement. If you haven’t yet cleared away debris from your gutters, early winter is a great time to do it.
  5. Inspect your fireplace and chimney: Before you light that first log, contact a professional chimney sweep to ensure your fireplace and chimney are in the best shape to safely heat your location. When you’re not using your fireplace, keep the flue completely closed to avoid warm air from escaping through the chimney.
  6. Keep the garage doors closed.
  7. Test the anti-freeze in your fleet vehicles. Check your vehicles’ batteries.
  8. Ice preparation: Purchase supplies to address ice on sidewalks and at your building entrances.
  9. Cover: Ensure all outdoor air conditioning units are covered.
  10. Thermostats: Keep the building’s internal thermostat set to at least 55 degrees Fahrenheit to prevent freezing.

Stay warm and be safe!

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