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Georgia gov. issues emergency after Atlanta hospital flooded

FILE-In this Friday, Jan. 24, 2014 file photo, a worker wheels beds through the emergency department at Grady Memorial Hospital, in Atlanta. Georgia's governor has issued an emergency declaration because of capacity issues at Atlanta-area hospitals after a flooding incident at the state's largest trauma center last week. Grady Memorial Hospital in Atlanta started diverting patients to other hospitals on Dec. 7 because a burst water pipe flooded and damaged multiple floors of the hospital. (AP Photo/David Goldman, File)

ATLANTA (AP) — Georgia’s governor has issued an emergency declaration because of capacity issues at Atlanta-area hospitals after a flooding incident at the state’s largest trauma center last week.

Grady Memorial Hospital in Atlanta started diverting patients to other hospitals on Dec. 7 because a burst water pipe flooded and damaged multiple floors of the hospital. Partial diversions continued Friday as Gov. Brian Kemp issued the emergency declaration.

“Due to increased patient load, other metropolitan Atlanta hospital systems are now at capacity and implementing or contemplating implementation of diversion protocols,” the declaration says.

The declaration allows state resources to be marshaled and used to combat the problem.

Grady hospital said in a statement that they began accepting “trauma, stroke, and burn patients only” Friday morning.

“We continue to make great progress with repairs following the break of a 24-inch water pipe Saturday afternoon. Repairs to areas of the hospital impacted by the pipe break are ongoing,” the statement says. A visitation restriction at the hospital has been lifted, and the hospital says it is no longer transferring patients because of the flooding.

News outlets report that a 30-bed mobile hospital will be brought in from North Carolina in order to expand capacity, though it was not immediately clear when the mobile unit would be ready.