ATLANTA (AP) - Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal says parts of the Augusta area on the state's east side are among the hardest-hit areas as crews struggle to restore hundreds of power outages across the state.
Deal says that he plans to fly over the area in a helicopter with Augusta's mayor an official from nearby Columbia County to assess the situation Thursday afternoon.
Deal said teams of workers with chain saws to help clear trees and branches and National Guard soldiers were among the resources being sent to help residents of east Georgia.
Pam Tucker, director of Columbia County's emergency services, called the situation there "critical" and referred to Wednesday's ice storm as a "major disaster situation," the Augusta Chronicle reported. Tucker said the loss of power affected 85 percent of the county.