Snowy weather edges into Triangle

Posted December 18, 2010 7:37 a.m. EST
Updated December 18, 2010 3:49 p.m. EST

— A band of snow and freezing rain edged into the Triangle from the west on mid-afternoon Saturday. A bout of wintry weather is likely to strike the region after nightfall.

WRAL viewers have reported bursts of snow and sleet in western Raleigh and in Durham, Orange, Johnston, Lee, Moore, Person, Pitt, Wayne and Wilson counties.

"Snow just began here about 2 p.m. and (is) falling quietly but quickly. Small snow flakes!" Brenda Berry, of Hurdle Mills, wrote in an email.

The Dept. of Transportation was taking a "wait and see" approach Saturday before spreading brine, a mixture of salt and water that prevents ice and snow from sticking to the road, to Wake County roads. They did spread brine in counties expected to be hit harder by snow, including Harnett, Cumberland and Robeson.

The afternoon rain and wintry mix will turn to snow by early nighttime in a 16-county area covered by a winter weather advisory, east from Orange County through Wake County to Wilson and north from Harnett County to Halifax County.

"We could see a little more in the way of patchy snow develop as we get to 6 or 7 p.m. Then, there could be a burst this evening into the overnight hours," WRAL meteorologist Mike Moss said.

Accumulations will vary from a trace to an inch in the southwestern-most of the counties covered by the advisory to between 1 and 2 inches in northeastern counties.

Areas south and east of that advisory area will mostly rain. A little snow or sleet could mix in, but no accumulations are expected.

Snowfall will end before sunrise Sunday, though some showers and flurries could linger in eastern North Carolina Sunday morning.

The rest of Sunday and Monday are expected to be precipitation-free, with highs in the low 40s. Tuesday has a shot at spotty, light precipitation, but temperatures are expected to be warm enough to keep it just rain.