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Ice, not snow, the next challenge

Posted January 7, 2011

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— While snow is in the forecast for Monday, WRAL Chief Meteorologist Greg Fishel quashed hopes for significant accumulation.

"I see no way that this system could be comparable to what we had at Christmas," he said Friday. "Get that out of your mind."

A bitterly cold weekend sets up the atmosphere for dry air to move into the Carolinas from the south and west. 

Fishel predicted light snow would begin to fall late Monday.

It will quickly transition to freezing rain Monday night and end as drizzle Tuesday morning, WRAL meteorologist Mike Maze said. 

Monday's temperatures won't get much above the freezing mark, so rain, sleet and ice could make Tuesday's travel a challenge. 

"We won't see a snowy impact," Maze said, "but could see more of an icy impact."

That is a worry for Drew Elliot of Progress Energy. Ice can weigh down power lines leaving customers in the dark and cold. "An eighth of an inch – that's worse than six inches of snow in some cases," he said.

The construction crew of Madison Renovations planned a working weekend so they do not lose days of work should the snow and ice fall.

"We're going to work Saturday because we may not be able to work Monday or Tuesday," said William Madison. "It just backs everything up."

In Wake County, the Department of Transportation was already looking ahead to the next chance for precipitation. Steve Abbott said crews would wait until any rain from Friday had dried, but then planned to spread brine to prevent ice from building up on roads.

Elliot's utility team was also in wait-and-see mode. If the power goes out, they spring into action.

"Generally, in winter storms, we can be restoring power even as the storm is on going. So that lets us keep ahead of the storm a little bit," he said. 

10 Comments

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  • kewlmom Jan 7, 2011

    Ick, rather snow than ice...

  • momof2gr8grls Jan 7, 2011

    Sure hope we don't get ice.........bleh. Have to offer a shout out to the DOT for getting on top of the roads prior to the snow at Christmas - hope they're getting geared up for Monday too!

  • Made In USA Jan 7, 2011

    I think they got the forecast fairly close. They said there was a POSSIBILITY of snow, nothing more. The fact that these weather systems are unpredictable, freezing rain is not that far off the original call for snow.

  • Big Mike Jan 7, 2011

    Thanks Greg......we appreciate you're honesty.....no slobbering and over pumped adjectives for this one!

  • themacs Jan 7, 2011

    Guess who it was that put it into our minds to begin with!

  • random musings Jan 7, 2011

    as much as I detest snow, I'd MUCH rather have snow than ice, which is what I fear this may turn into.

  • rosepalomino Jan 7, 2011

    boo for ice storm

  • TeresaBee Jan 7, 2011

    Well! I feel like Greg was personally talking to me!

  • sorry Jan 7, 2011

    with all the fancy equipment they have they still cannot tell you what the forecast is going to be unless it's right on top of you. all those satellites up there are useless sometimes. first they tell us snow as much as we had at Christmas time now to maybe just a little bit or maybe ice who knows until it comes. don't have much faith in weather men no more. Remember the year 2000 just a trace we got 20 inches.

    So we just have way to see what happens Monday my best guess will not do much at all so don't go to the stores and spend all your money for something that will not happen.

  • eponasporthorses Jan 7, 2011

    Ok so first it is going to be a big event and now hardly anything? hummmmm I think the meteorologists around here have proven in the past we can't trust a thing they say.