Thousands of National Guard troops have been activated to combat the effects of a massive snowstorm that has shut down governments, schools and businesses from the deep South up into New England.
Georgia – which has been hit hard by snow in recent weeks – and Pennsylvania each have deployed the largest number of Army and Air National Guard troops. More than 600 troops and 150 vehicles are patrolling roads in Georgia to bolster first responders, according to the Pentagon. Almost 800 troops in Pennsylvania are providing medical services and conducting checks on residents, as well as helping stranded drivers and manning traffic-control points.
There are more than 2,300 National Guard troops helping with the recovery effort in Alabama, Delaware, Georgia, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Virginia and Washington, D.C., according to the Defense Department.
They have assisted at least one broken-down 18-wheeler on an interstate highway, and have helped drivers stranded due to the weather.
The South Carolina Army National Guard has deployed 80,000-pound A-1 wreckers to help tow out some vehicles that otherwise would remain stranded in the intensely icy conditions, the National Guard Bureau reports.
In Washington, D.C., a desert-beige Humvee was parked outside famous eatery Ben’s Chili Bowl along the city’s U Street Corridor. Streets in the district remain mostly deserted following the closure of the federal government.