More than 12M in Southeast bracing for snowstorm; Charlotte, Raleigh under winter weather alerts
The storm will bring dangerous conditions for drivers across the Southeast on Friday morning.
Between 1 and 3 inches of snow is expected in North Carolina and southern Virginia.
But the snow will be short-lived: Temperatures will climb Friday and into the weekend.
A winter storm is bringing dangerous road conditions for drivers Friday morning in portions of the the Carolinas, Virginia and Georgia, as snow and sleet moved across the Southeast.
The National Weather service warned of hazardous travel conditions through the morning hours due to snow and ice buildup on roadways in south central portions of Virginia and northeast North Carolina.
Black ice was expected to clear up later Friday as temperatures warmed above freezing in northeast Georgia, western North Carolina and northern South Carolina, the National Weather Service said.
More than 12 million people were under some form of a winter weather alert Thursday night into Friday, including the Charlotte and Raleigh metro areas.
AccuWeather said the snow was falling into the late evening in some of the region’s largest cities, including Richmond, Raleigh, Greenville, and even some of the mountainous areas of northern Georgia. Most were covered in a blanket of snow by the time the sun had set Thursday.
About 1 to 3 inches of snow was predicted for a large part of North Carolina and southern Virginia; 3 to 6 inches was likely over the southern Appalachians and part of eastern North Carolina and southeastern Virginia.
Many school systems in North Carolina and Virginia closed on Thursday in advance of the storm.
North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper and state emergency management officials urged residents to be prepared and monitor local forecasts ahead of the developing storm system, which meteorologists said would begin as rain.
The National Weather Service in Raleigh tweeted that “the central NC snow drought should end at 437 days” Thursday.
“Portions of North Carolina are forecast to get more snow (Thursday) than Washington or Philadelphia have received all season,” CNN meteorologist Monica Garret said.
Winter snow totals in the I-95 corridor of the mid-Atlantic are way below normal – 0.6 of an inch in Washington, 0.3 of an inch in Philadelphia, and 4.7 inches in New York City thus far, AccuWeather said.
But the snow will be short-lived. After the storm concludes early Friday, temperatures will be ideal for melting as highs climb into the upper 40s on Saturday, 50s on Sunday and 60s on Monday, the Capital Weather Gang said.
While snow flies in North Carolina, much of the flood-ravaged Deep South was forecast to see a soaking rain Thursday, adding to what has been one of the wettest winters on record in that region, the Weather Channel reported.
Up to 1.5 inches of additional rain was forecast to fall over parts of the Lower Mississippi Valley to the Southeast, the weather service said, which could lead to flash flooding in some areas.
Weeks of heavy rain have inundated a large portion of the southern U.S., bringing near-record flooding to portions of Mississippi and Tennessee. Jackson, Mississippi, was especially hard-hit as the Pearl River rose to its third-highest level on record, flooding hundreds of homes.