Winter Storm Expected in the Southeast on Saturday

January 05, 2017 by David Moran
Topics:   WeatherOps | Snow | Precipitation |

A winter storm is expected in the Southeast on Saturday. There will be the potential for wintry precipitation for portions of the area as a low pressure develops off the coast. Areas north and northwest of this system, including Alabama, Georgia, and parts of the Carolinas, will have the highest potential for snow, as well as some sleet. 

WeatherOps Advisories Thursday, January 5, 2017WeatherOps Advisories

Rain will change over to a wintry mix and eventually to snow on Friday, as colder air filters into the region. While snowfall accumulations will depend in part on how much cold air filters in, most areas could see 1-3 inches with isolated higher amounts in excess of 4 inches. By late Friday evening, snow will begin to move into the Carolinas where snow accumulations of 2-4 inches are expected, but a few areas may see amounts in excess of 5 inches. 

The Southeast is no stranger to winter storms. In 2014, thousands of drivers were stranded on Atlanta interstates as snow and ice brought traffic to a standstill. Many spent the night in supermarkets and some students spent the night at their school. 

Atlanta snow January 2014Atlanta Snow Event - January, 2014

Snow amounts with this weekend's storm will be similar to those in 2014, but exact details on potential impacts remain uncertain. Snow will likely begin late Friday across northern Georgia, causing travel difficulties into Saturday morning. By Saturday afternoon, snow will mainly be confined to the Carolinas. WeatherOps will continue to monitor the situation and fine tune the forecast as more information becomes available.

If you need to drive during this event, here are some safety tips:

  • Drive at lower speeds
  • Keep a lot of distance between you and the car in front of you, as it is takes longer to stop
  • Accelerate and decelerate slowly
  • Avoid icy roads
  • Make sure your gas tank is full, in case you get caught in a traffic jam
  • Let someone know your route
  • If you don't feel confident driving in snow, then find alternative transportation

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David Moran

David is a WeatherOps forecaster at WDT. He began working at WDT after receiving Bachelor’s Degrees in Meteorology and Mathematics from the University of Oklahoma. He prepares extended forecasts on potential weather hazards, as well as forecasts for utility clients. David also prepares and maintains the daily forecast blog. He became an AMS Certified Consulting Meteorologist in January 2017.