The above-average temperatures the Charlotte area felt in February will come to an end as a cold blast hits the Carolinas and brings snow to the area Sunday morning.
Most neighborhoods across the region woke up to snow early Sunday expecting the flakes were not sticking to the ground because of warm ground temperatures but snow seemed to lawns and decks.
Some churches have already canceled services for Sunday morning:
- Gateway International Baptist Church, Taylorsville, opening at 3 p.m.
- Joy Christian Fellowship Church, Matthews, first service canceled
- Recovery Church of Charlotte, closed
- Serenity Church of Charlotte, closed
- Covenant Church, Lincolnton, first service canceled
- Houston Road Baptist Church, Troutman, Sunday School canceled
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A Winter Weather Advisory is in effect until 11 a.m. on Sunday, while a Freeze Warning will go into effect at 10 p.m. Sunday until 10 a.m. Monday.
The snow began developing around midnight Sunday. Real flurries began around 6 a.m. Sunday morning.
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Travel issues will not be impacted by the snow, as roads will be wet but not slick. Around 6:30 a.m., rescue crews had to respond to a crash on Interstate 485 near South Boulevard but nobody was seriously hurt.
A few minutes later, first responders were called to another crash on Interstate 85 near Interstate 77. Police told Channel 9 that the driver of a stolen car ran from the scene after spinning out into a ditch.
Accumulations could still be closer to an inch in some spots, but we won't really see this adding up because it is melting on the ground.
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The snow could fall at a heavy rate, leading to accumulations north and west of Charlotte, but the short duration, warm ground and street temps will mean that the accumulation will be up to a dusting or less in Charlotte.
The sun will come out later Sunday morning, and it will quickly warm up by the afternoon, so any traces of snow will likely be all gone late in the day.
Highs on Sunday will climb into the mid-40s, and that afternoon sunshine should help dry things up. We are not too concerned with refreezing for early Monday, but it will be cold overnight, with lows in the upper 20s.
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Areas northwest of Charlotte -- in Morganton, Lincolnton, Hickory, Statesville and Shelby -- will see higher accumulations that could top up to 2 inches. The street temperatures are warm, but there will be a much bigger impact to travel in these areas with heavy snow falling.
Accumulations across the High Country will be 2-4 inches of snow. The Charlotte-metro may see up to an inch of snow but, again, it will mostly stick to grass and sidewalks.
We are watching another system that will move through Monday afternoon. This will arrive by the afternoon with temperatures in the mid-40s, so, as of now we are expecting a rain event with the possibility of snow in the mountains.
There could be a brief window of freezing rain late Monday as you head further north, which is something we will be watching closely.
The winter chill sticks around through the rest of the work week, with highs only reaching the 40s and 50s.
DOT crews prepare the roads
The Charlotte Department of Transportation had crews treat area roads Saturday night in order to lower the freezing point of water so any snow that falls won't stick to roads.
Drivers who plan to be out on the roads Sunday morning should use caution, especially when driving on bridges and overpasses.
"CDOT will be evaluating and re-evaluating every hour what's going on on our streets. If it looks like it's going to be icy, always err on the side of caution. Be careful," said CDOT communications manager Linda Durrett.
Durrett said crews will salt high priority areas such as thoroughfares, connectors, main roads, hospital entrances, emergency entrances and police stations.
In the higher elevations, crews spent the day getting snow plows ready for the weekend. Workers reconnected snow plows and salt spreaders because they had taken all of the equipment apart because the weather has been so warm.
DOT crews in the mountains didn't pre-treat roads with brine because they expected some rain Saturday afternoon. Between 5-6 p.m. Saturday, crews started staging on primary roads and put down salt and sand in trouble spots.
Channel 9 was also in the Foothills to monitor how crews were preparing. Hickory Public Works began putting plows on 16 of their trucks. The plan is to have crews come around 2 a.m. Sunday for the possible snow.
Strongs storms move through Charlotte area ahead of winter weather
Stormy weather moved through the Charlotte region early Friday morning, making the morning drive a mess.
Heavy lightning accompanied this fast-moving system, which cleared out of the metro area by 7 a.m.
The wet weather comes ahead of a strong cold front that will make it feel like winter again this weekend. Highs will still warm close to 70 degrees Friday afternoon, with strong gusty winds, but we won’t warm out of the 50s on Saturday.
- Track the rain with WSOC-TV weather app
- Explore the interactive radar
- LOOKING AHEAD: Spring outlook staying warmer, wetter than average
Cox Media Group