Caldwell braces for winter storm

Jan. 18, 2013 @ 08:06 AM

Caldwell County took another drenching Thursday while heavy rains fell ahead of an impending winter storm that forecasters expect to dump anywhere from 2 to 6 inches of snow in the area.
As of Thursday afternoon, the National Weather Service’s forecast said the southern and central Appalachian mountains would have enough cold air move in behind the storm to cause the rain to change over to snow. Conditions should improve early Friday, but the forecast calls for a high of 36 and a low of 21. The weather service also issued a flood watch and a winter storm warning for Caldwell and the surrounding area.
The transition from rain to snow was expected to begin late Thursday afternoon after temperatures began to quickly fall into the 30s. People should expect a rapid freeze-up of water on roadways as temperatures dropped into the 20s
Heavy, wet snow combined with gusty winds could cause power outages, and brief periods of blizzard-like conditions should be expected, especially in the higher elevations. Winds will blow from the north at 15-25 miles per hour with gusts expected at 40 mph. Blowing and drifting snow also pose dangers to drivers. The North Carolina Department of Transportation issued a warning that travelers should stay off the roads until conditions improve. If you must travel, however, make sure to take a cell phone and wear a warm coat, gloves and boots. Pack a flashlight, food and water in your vehicle in case of an emergency.