Winter Storm Leon Puts Southern Credit Unions on Ice
Southern states will remember Winter Storm Leon because it could be one of the worst winter storms to hit the region in decades.
The storm has already forced credit unions in Louisiana, Florida, Alabama, Mississippi, Georgia and South Carolina to close branches early Tuesday.
Some credit unions said they expect to reopen Wednesday during regular hours or delay opening hours, depending on how much snow and ice the storm produces.
A few credit unions like the $1.1 billion Army Aviation Center Federal Credit Union in Daleville, Ala., posted on its Facebook site that all of its branches will be closed Wednesday. The cooperative closed its branches around noon on Tuesday.
“It’s safe to say most branches are closed from South Alabama up to Birmingham,” said Mike Bridges, vice president of communications for the League of Southern Credit Union and Affiliates in Tallahassee. “We’re starting to see some closings in Pensacola.”
Did he say Pensacola, Fla.?
Indeed, the $157 million Members First Credit Union of Florida closed branches at 11 a.m. Tuesday, and the $126 million Central Credit Union of Florida closed up shop at 1 p.m. with the hope to reopen Wednesday.
Snow is forecast for some areas of the Florida Panhandle, but freezing rain is likely over a larger area of the state Tuesday afternoon, according to the Weather Channel.
The LSCU also closed its office in Birmingham, Ala., Tuesday at noon. It is expected to reopen Wednesday.
Some areas of Alabama have been hit with freezing rain.
“We have witnessed two accidents on the bridge just across from our corporate office,” read a Facebook post from the $1 billion MAX Credit Union in Montgomery, Ala. “Please be cautious on icy bridges! Be safe.”
Minutes after that post, MAX CU announced it would close all of its branches and service center.
Winter Storm Leon is the fifth extreme weather event since Jan. 3 that has forced credit unions to close operations.
On Jan. 21, Winter Storm Janus generated several inches of snow and frigid temperatures throughout most of the Mid-Atlantic, Northeast and New England states forcing credit unions to close up shop early delay branch and office openings on Jan. 22.
On Jan. 6, numerous credit unions across the nation were forced to close branches because of brutal, life-threatening subzero temperatures generated by the Polar Vortex, and on Jan. 7 and 8, credit unions in upstate New York shut down because of blizzard conditions.
On Jan. 3, some credit unions had to close or delay opening branches after a winter storm, Hercules, dumped one to two feet or more of snow throughout some states in the Midwest and Northeast.