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GDC Recovery Operations Following Hurricane Irma

Gregory C. Dozier
Director of Public Affairs: 
Joan Heath
Contact Name: 
Jeal Salter
Contact Email:
September 14, 2017

GDC Recovery Operations Following Hurricane Irma

Power restored, offenders return safely to facilities evacuated

FORSYTH, Ga. – In the aftermath of Hurricane Irma, the Georgia Department of Corrections (GDC) has initiated recovery operations at affected facilities, and both staff and offender crews have been continuously responding to debris removal requests and other relief efforts statewide.

“Our main concerns during this unprecedented event were to ensure the security and safety of both our staff and the entire offender population, and to assist our partner agencies and local communities however possible,” said Commissioner Gregory C. Dozier. “I’m very proud of our staff for their commitment and professionalism during this massive storm, and GDC will continue to provide relief to the affected areas.”

A total of 1,701 offenders housed at Coastal State Prison (SP) and 252 residents housed at Coastal Transitional Center (TC) were evacuated to other facilities across the state, in advance of the storm. All offenders and residents were safely returned today, September 14, 2017. GDC staff from Facilities Operations tracked and coordinated the evacuation and return of all offenders and residents.

During the storm, 31 state facilities lost power, but successfully ran off pre-staged generators with no interference to daily operations. Power at these facilities has since been restored. Since the movement of all offenders is complete and power has been restored, normal visitation will be conducted at all state facilities, beginning September 16-17.

Following the storm, GDC received requests to assist several local communities and municipalities with relief efforts. GDC staff worked with the affected areas and provided nine offender firefighter teams and seven debris removal teams, consisting of a minimum of five offenders and one officer or fire chief each, to 13 counties. The offenders assisted with the removal of trees and other debris, clearing roads, and cleaning shelter sites. GDC will continue to respond to requests for assistance with all resources available.

The GDC has one of the largest prison systems in the U.S. and is responsible for supervising nearly 52,000 state prisoners. It is the largest law enforcement agency in the state with approximately 10,500 employees.

For more information on the GDC call 478-992-5248 or visit

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