Meteorologists don't have the full answer yet, but the simple one to why there was little to no snow on the ground this morning is "it wasn't cold enough, long enough," says Chris Horne of the National Weather Service.
Thursday's storm had been much hyped, with area snow accumulations predicted to be as much as 11 inches.
Instead, the region received some intense snow showers Wednesday evening, but by the 11 p.m, just a steady downpour of rain fell on Rock Hill. The amount of rain during the evening was consistent with the predicted precipitation, Horne said, it just wasn't snow.
The snow storm had moved north with reports of heavy snowfall along the I-77 corridor in North Carolina and in the mountains. Statesville, N.C., received 5 inches of snow, Horne said.
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Charlotte had about 2 inches of snow and Concord, N.C., got about 4.5 inches of snow. Tega Cay had about .5 an inch, according to The Herald's news partner, WSOC-TV.
Most roads appear clear, although may be some slick spots. A small amount of snow and ice was spotted on I-77 but traffic was moving normally at 7 a.m. No major crashes were reported.
The Highway Patrol reported there were no fatalities related to the winter weather overnight. SCHP responded to an increase in calls for service due to the winter weather primarily in the Upstate. There were 399 calls for service statewide compared to 163 during that same time frame last year with 242 collisions compared to 98, 102 motorists assisted compared to 43, and 40 responses to abandoned vehicles compared to 16.
Thursday's forecast calls for a 50 percent chance of rain before 11 a.m. with patches of dense fog. The weather will be mostly cloudy, with a high near 36, according to the National Weather Service. The temperatures will be below normal until next week, however, Horne said.
On Wednesday, Gov. Nikki Haley declared a state of emergency for 31 counties in South Carolina, including York, Chester and Lancaster counties, and the legislature decided not to meet Thursday.
All schools in York, Chester and Lancaster counties are closed Thursday, as road conditions were expected to be unsafe.
Emergency responders in the region were prepared for a major snowfall. The American Red Cross had opened a shelter in Richburg Wednesday night for stranded motorists on Interstate 77.
Chester County government is operating on a normal schedule Thursday.
"There were no snowmen built in Chester County, but from a safety standpoint, everyone should be pleased," said Ed Darby, deputy director of Chester County Emergency Management.
Town offices in Fort Mill are opening at noon today.
Earlier on Wednesday, the storm system had dropped several inches of snow and ice across several Southern states.
The S.C. Department of Transportation continues to have crews on rotating 12-hour shifts applying salt and other anti-icing/deicing materials to roads. York County is monitoring I-77 and pushing slush as the pavement is mostly wet.
So far this winter, the S.C. Department of Transportation ha applied 3,598 tons of salts to roads, 621 of sands, 10,350 gallons of calcium chloride and 404,054 gallons of salt brine.