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Winter storm warnings in Georgia? Not again!

With the memory of the winter storm that paralyzed Atlanta fresh in their minds, Georgia's Governor and other officials presented a plan to deal with the winter weather that is expected over the next few days in Northern Georgia, including a mix of rain, snow and ice.

The January winter storm caused horrific traffic jams throughout the metro area, triggered numerous car accidents across the South, stranded hundreds of students in their classrooms and left thousands of commuters stuck on the road as the storm passed.

The governor noted that it was important to avoid an overreaction, as that could have an "economic impact," just the same as an under reaction. Nonetheless, when you consider traveling in winter weather, especially if ice is a in the forecast, think about the economic impact on your bank account of even the most minor of car accident.

Say, you decide to risk driving to work on icy roads. You come to a bend in the road, and too late, realize that you cannot make the curve because of ice. If there is a guardrail, it may stop you. But, the crash will probably trigger your airbag, and destroy a substantial amount of the exterior of your car.

If you remain uninjured, your car could still be totaled. Damage to the bumper, engine, transmission and drive train could render your car unrepariable. Drive a new SUV with all wheel drive? You could be looking at $20,000 or more in repairs. And you will miss more than one day of work.

If you have an auto loan, you could find yourself in the unpleasant position of owing more on your loan than your insurance company will pay when totaling the vehicle. Moreover, this rosy scenario is assuming you don't suffer any physical injuries in the crash.

If it is icy in the next few days, ask yourself carefully if your destination is really worth the risk.

Source: Ajc.com, "State leaders try to present unified front ahead of wintry weather," Greg Bluestein, February 10, 2014

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