Get your cold weather gear ready, Lowcountry folks. It’s going to be a cold and wet weekend.
The Beaufort County area should see very cold rain as a storm system sweeps through, having left snow and sleet in other parts of South Carolina, according to the National Weather Service.
A warming shelter at Sea Island Presbyterian Church will be open from 8 p.m. to 7 a.m. Saturday, Sunday and Monday nights to ensure that Beaufort County residents have a safe place to stay warm. Meals will be provided each evening and morning. Snacks and water also will be available. Residents needing transportation to the shelter should call Non-Emergency Dispatch at 843-524-2777.
Is there still a chance of snow in the Lowcountry?
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The National Weather Service isn’t completely ruling out the chance of snow for the Lowcountry, but chances are dwindling.
The chance of seeing snow, sleet or freezing rain depends on timing. If an arctic blast of cold air sweeps through at the same time a large storm system dumps precipitation, we might see white.
When will it start raining?
Rain is likely to start in the Lowcountry after 8 p.m. Friday through noon Saturday as temperatures drop from the lower 40s to below freezing.
About 1/2 to 1 inch of rain is expected, according to the National Weather Service.
Prepare for slick roads, black ice
In a news release, the Charleston office of the National Weather Service warned that water on roads Saturday night might freeze into black ice as temperatures drop.
The weather system will bring the first hard freeze of the season to the Lowcountry, with low temperatures in the 20s from Sunday night to Monday.
Where will it snow?
The large storm system is likely to dump snow, sleet and freezing rain over a large part of the region, stretching from Atlanta to Richmond, Va.
In South Carolina, chances of snow are much higher in the Midlands and Upstate, the National Weather Service said. Columbia could receive about 1/2 to 1 inch of snow.
Dangerous travel expected
In addition to black ice in freezing areas, AcccuWeather meteorologists are predicting snow accumulation from 1 to 6 inches along Interstates 85 and 77.
“Fortunately, the icy and snowy conditions will not develop in the I-85 corridor ... until after the Friday afternoon commute, which should allow millions to get home,” according to AccuWeather meteorologist Maggie Samuhel. “However, people on the road in this area Friday night and Saturday are likely to experience dangerous travel conditions and will run the risk of getting stuck.”