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January 17, 2013

Snow’s a possibility

Tarboro can expect a wintery mix on Friday

TARBORO — For the first time this winter, snow is in the forecast for Edgecombe County.

The greatest chance for snow is between 8 p.m. today and 4 a.m. tomorrow, which could cause slippery road conditions for motorists.

“It looks like the [snow] accumulations in that area are going to be minimal, if at all,” said Ryan Ellis, a meteorologist for the National Weather Service in Raleigh. “The thing to watch out for is this event is going to be preceded by a lot of rain. It looks like when all is said and done from this morning through Friday evening, we could have as much as 1.3 inches of rain. Whatever wetness is on the road has the potential to freeze in the morning.”

Sgt. Al Braxton of the Tarboro Police Department cautioned motorists to be on the lookout for black ice.

“Be careful on bridges and overpasses,” he said. “They can freeze over quicker than roads can.”

Braxton also advised using caution when passing motorists who might have pulled off the side of the road because of slippery conditions.

“Be careful and take it slow,” he said. “Increase your following distance. Do understand when you have hazardous conditions, run below the speed limit. Speed limits are for optimal conditions, when weather’s good.”

The heaviest rain will fall this afternoon and this evening, said Ellis, with a chance of the precipitation changing to snow or sleet later in the evening. The low temperature forecast for tonight is 29 degrees. A strong area of low pressure is fueling the winter weather system, but the majority of the storm impacts will likely fall to the north and west of Edgecombe County.

“It’s really kind of a grab bag for what you guys might see,” Ellis said.

Drier, colder air will come on the heels of the winter weather system Friday afternoon, with a forecast high temperature of 45 degrees for the day and a low of 22 at night. The rest of the weekend will bring sunny skies and high temperatures in the mid-to-upper 50’s.

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