Weather

Triangle Dodges Winter Weather Woes

Posted January 20, 2007
Updated January 21, 2007

Warmer temperatures kept roadways clear of icy precipitation as areas of cold rain moved across the Triangle area on Sunday.

Winter Weather Advisories issued for several northwestern counties in central North Carolina were canceled late Sunday afternoon. Freezing Rain Advisories remained in effect until 6 a.m. Monday for several counties northwest of the Triangle area, as well as much of southern Virginia.

Areas of light rain moved through central North Carolina early Sunday afternoon, with a mix of light rain and patchy sleet in the Triangle area north and west. Highs ranged from the mid-30s to low-40s.

In the evening hours, the temperature was expected to drop into the low-30s, with light rain and possible freezing rain falling in some areas.

The combination of near-freezing temperatures and steady rain had local Highway Patrol officers watching and waiting on Sunday, hoping ice wouldn't come into the picture.

“What my guys are doing is monitoring the interstates mainly, and keeping an eye out for the bridges and overpasses, because they’re the first things to ice over,” said Sgt Gerald Cutler with the Highway Patrol. “And if they spot any problems, they're going to contact the Department of Transportation.”

However, Raleigh's DOT maintenance yard wasn't brimming with activity on Sunday. The trucks were locked up and parked, and de-icers weren't on the road because conditions weren't a major problem for drivers.

Progress Energy and Duke Power officials said they would have crews ready to respond if there are any outages. However, icing typically wouldn't become a problem for power lines unless there more than a quarter of an inch of ice formed on surfaces.

The mild weather outlook for the Triangle was a stark contrast to the latest in a series of winter storms battered Colorado on Sunday, dumping several inches of snow and whipping up strong wind that created whiteout conditions on the state's eastern plains.

Accidents caused by blowing snow and icy roads closed southbound Interstate 25 near Fort Collins for two hours Sunday morning. State Patrol Master Trooper Ron Watkins said no injuries were reported.

Wind up to 60 mph piled the snow into drifts as high as 3 feet in parts of the state, the National Weather Service said.

A blizzard warning was in effect for much of eastern and northeastern Colorado, and the State Patrol advised against unnecessary travel.

The stormy weather in Colorado followed closely on the heels of a storm that spread heavy snow across parts of the Plains on Saturday, limiting visibility and creating hazardous driving conditions.

That storm was blamed for at least eight traffic deaths: four in Nebraska, three in Kansas and one in Oklahoma.

The Plains storm spared much of Oklahoma from heavy snow, but utilities reported about 30,000 homes and business were still without power Sunday because of an ice storm one week earlier.

"We're coming down to what we expect to be very near the end of the restoration process," said Stan Whiteford, a spokesman for Public Service Company of Oklahoma, which reported about 4,000 customers still blacked out, mostly in the McAlester area. "We think we're going to be pretty close to wrapping things up."

Authorities in Oklahoma's Pittsburg and McIntosh counties implemented a nighttime curfew following reports of break-ins and the theft of generators set up to power railroad crossing guards.
17 Comments

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  • headlong Jan 22, 2007

    I think they goofed again. Not sure about the rest but here in Oxford we have had ice all day...which is beautiful hanging off our fence, trees, etc...right now some flurries out there!!! LOVE IT!!!

  • sabatinom Jan 22, 2007

    This is not bad weather at all. I am from Massachusetts and the plows don't even hit the road until there is 3 inches on the ground. It was raining by noon and my kids were sent home from school. Then...the next day there was a two hour delay. Its one thing to be prepared for severe weather, but this is far from severe.

  • uncw05 Jan 21, 2007

    tclark002, it's not that our lives at home are boring and we want to go to work, it's that many of us have bosses who think that we should risk our lives going in any time there is less than 2 feet of snow/ice, and since we have no choice but to go into work, we would rather not have to fight the weather to get there. There are also people who get paid hourly who can't afford to miss the time at work.

  • Mrs. Fabulous Jan 21, 2007

    sagesburntjade, YOU BETTER SAY THAT AGAIN!!!!! LOL... I love this type of weather. I complain all the time when I hear the meterologist call this type of weather bad weather!! I'm like WHAT??? Why is it bad weahter? 90 degee to me is bad weather. For those that are bored and don't have a great life at home and want to be at work while we have snow or ice, please get out there and DRIVE in this weahter!!! I'll be at home surfing the net and snugged up with warmeth as well. Stop complaining and let God have His perfect work. If the weather is going to do something, then what can you do about it?

    LET IT SNOW; LET IT ICE; LET IT SNOW!!!!

  • tell.the.truth.and.run Jan 21, 2007

    If taking personal responsibility for your own family's health, safety and comfort is geeky, count me in. I'll be snug and warm in front of my wood-burning fireplace and surfing the net thanks to my generator while the unprepared shiver and whine about being bored.

  • diwanicki Jan 21, 2007

    The forecasters can only predict so much. Noone knows for sure exactly what is going to happen. Its when they dismiss the chance without checking into it that is a big problem. You people should be grateful that we haven't been hit like the west. You complain about alittle bit and they are getting hit with one storm after another. I agree with ncentity and a few others.

  • dhamma Jan 21, 2007

    Started sleeting at 11am off Buffalo Road. Temp 35.8 and falling. Not sure I totally agree with the forcast. Especially after that 9 hour commute when only flurries were predicted a few years back.....:-) Guess we will have to just wait and see.

  • Mom on Call Jan 21, 2007

    It always scares me when they say we will only get rain and it happens overnight. Ice Storm of 2002...

    Snow is great...ice/no power is no fun!

  • finallysingle Jan 21, 2007

    underground utilities is the ticket.

  • Say it to my face Jan 21, 2007

    Always be prepared for situations like this. Alternate cooking plan (gas), well stocked pantry, alternate heat source (kerosene, gas)fresh water and sanitary items - also take 5 minutes to make sure that your diabled/elderly neighbor/family member/friend is prepared (include medications and O2 supplies). Simple things like this can save lives.

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