U.S. President Barack Obama has declared an emergency for Georgia, where forecasters predict a crippling ice storm.
Mr. Obama has ordered federal funds to supplement the state response to the storm that threatens to coat cities and highways with ice. The storm is expected to pull down trees and power lines and possibly knock out power to thousands.
Forecasters have posted a winter storm warning for Georgia through Thursday afternoon. Heavy rain and cold gusty winds can be expected.
Wednesday's storm also is predicted to bring ice and snow from Alabama into Virginia, while heavy snow is forecast for Thursday in the mid-Atlantic through New England.
The normally temperate South is not used to fierce winter weather and sometimes finds itself unprepared. An ice storm that hit the city of Atlanta two weeks ago took authorities by surprise and paralyzed traffic.