Much of North Carolina is feeling the effects of the latest winter storm, and North Carolinians should follow forecasts closely as snowfall spreads across the state, Governor Roy Cooper cautioned today.
“Be prepared for heavy snow at times and stay off the roads if you can when conditions get bad in your area,” Gov. Cooper said. “Even though the forecast tells us this storm will be short-lived, driving could remain hazardous tonight and tomorrow morning, especially on bridges and overpasses.”
Snow began falling in the mountains, foothills and Triad earlier today and is expected to continue in the mountains throughout the day. By noon, there were reports of three to five inches of snow across the far northwestern parts of the state, one to two inches in the northern foothills and between a trace to one inch of snow across the Triad and areas north of Charlotte.
Meteorologists predict that snow showers will move into the Triangle during the afternoon and eastern counties by evening. The latest forecast calls for accumulations of up to five inches of snow in the mountains (with larger amounts possible in higher elevations) and two to three inches in the foothills, Triad and several counties north of Charlotte. The Charlotte area and counties east of the I-95 corridor will likely see less than an inch of snow with accumulations limited to grassy or elevated surfaces.
A Wind Advisory and coastal Flood Advisory are in effect for the Outer Banks and Carteret County through Tuesday afternoon where minor flooding is expected on the ocean side in areas north of Cape Hatteras and along the sound side in Hatteras Village down through Carteret County.
At least 40 school systems were closed today or dismissed early to keep students safe. A number of community colleges as well as App State also have announced closings today.
NC Department of Transportation crews are working to clear roads in mountain counties where it began snowing early this morning. In other areas, NCDOT crews are ready to respond to the varying forecast, from snow and ice across much of the state and over wash along the coast.
Because rain fell immediately before it began snowing, crews were not able to brine ahead of the winter precipitation. Along the Outer Banks, equipment and crews are staged to push sand or ocean over wash off N.C. 12 as needed.
Follow NC Emergency Management and NCDOT on Facebook and Twitter for the latest storm updates. Real-time weather and road conditions, as well as winter safety tips, can be found on the free ReadyNC mobile app or online at readync.org.
Travelers are urged to go to drivenc.gov for up-to-date roadway conditions. Motorists are reminded NOT to call 911 or the State Highway Patrol Communication Centers for roadway conditions.
Source: Ford Porter, NC Office of the Governor