Current flooding in the Atlanta metro area may pose a threat to students, faculty and alumni planning to attend the football classic this weekend.
Metro Atlanta remained under flood watch, according to The National Weather Service, until 8 p.m. Tuesday. Heavy rains continued to flood a number of roads and bridges causing the Georgia Department of Transportation to close 11 bridges, state-controlled roads and highways.
Six people were killed and several were reported missing on Tuesday, according to the Weather Channel. Three of the causalities occurred as a result of driving vehicles into flooded roadways and bridges.
Martin Ukpai, 19, a second-year civil engineering student from Ft. Lauderdale, and a member of the football team, thinks the weather will not affect the game itself because it will be held in the Georgia Dome.
However, Ukpai said, “[The weather] may effect the turn out because (faculty and students) may not want to drive in the rain.”
Some students consider the Atlanta Classic as one of the most anticipated events of the fall semester.
The Student Government Association organizes a package to assist students with transportation and lodging for the game. After graduating, alumni from all over the nation travel to Atlanta to attend ‘rattler-themed’ social events.
Paris Proctor, 18, a first-year business administration student from Indianapolis Ind., is traveling to Atlanta for the events rather than the football exposition.
“I was going just for the outside activities not necessarily the game,” Proctor said.
Proctor also said her plans to attend the classic might be compromised as a result of the weather.
Despite the weather, Proctor said, a lot of people would probably attend the game in an effort to support the school’s football team and because some people have already purchased their tickets for the game.
The Georgia Department of Transportation is expecting the floodwaters to clear out by the time the classic begins, said Metro Atlanta Media Spokesman, Mark McKinnon.
“We are encouraged that the weather will clear up by this weekend,” McKinnon said.
Precautions are being implemented to help those attending this weekend’s activities travel throughout the metro area.
“We will have signs up for detours to let people know which way to detour around these problems,” McKinnon said.
According to weather.com, Atlanta’s Saturday forecast will be cloudy with showers and thunderstorm, a high in the upper 70s and lows in the mid 60s. Updates about the flooding situation will be available daily on weather.com.