MARTA will not scale back service during midday Friday as it typically does after 9 a.m. in order to help workers trying to beat the snow and sleet home this afternoon.
Throughout the day, trains will continue to operate at peak service levels -- every five minutes on the trunk (before the lines split) and every 10 minutes on the branches (after the lines split). There are no plans to alter bus schedules or routes at this time.
"We understand a lot of people will go home early, so we are keeping peak service throughout the day in case we get a crush of people trying to leave early," said MARTA spokesman Lyle Harris.
Some schools closed Friday, others announced they would have early release. Gov. Nathan Deal has declared a state of emergency in 21 counties and has ordered state offices to close at noon.
Meteorologists say that metro Atlanta could see as much as 2 inches of wintry precipitation starting mid-afternoon and more than a foot of snow could fall in north Georgia.
Harris said that the forecasts he has seen indicate temperatures will remain above freezing, but MARTA has contingency plans ready in the event that conditions on the ground worsen.
"We do have plans that are in place in case conditions turn bad, to maintain lifeline bus service on certain roads and certain routes," Harris said. "At this point we’re just watchful and waiting."