Freezing rain and icy conditions are expected to develop in the Grand Strand later in the day Friday than forecasters initially predicted, according to an updated weather briefing from the National Weather Service in Wilmington, N.C.
Freezing rain, sleet and ice are expected Friday afternoon through the night, according to the latest NWS weather briefing. Icy conditions are expected to persist through Saturday, even after precipitation has ended. Meteorologists said it is possible for roads to re-freeze Saturday night.
As of this morning, much of the Grand Strand’s precipitation had moved offshore, according to the NWS.
Forecasters now predict with “high confidence” that wintry precipitation will re-develop beginning in the afternoon. The precipitation will begin as freezing rain before transitioning to sleet, snow, or both.
Conditions are expected to worsen beginning in the afternoon, with bridges, overpasses and elevated roadways expected to freeze first. The NWS warned that travel would become increasingly dangerous beginning Friday afternoon.
“Dangerously cold” temperatures are expected Saturday and Sunday nights, especially threatening people who have lost power.
Threats posed by the severe weather include downed trees, power outages and dangerous travel conditions. Forecasters expect winds between 15 and 20 mph, with gusts up to 25 mph, which could add additional stress to icy trees and power lines, the NWS said.
An ice-storm warning is in effect in a South Carolina county and five North Carolina counties, according to the NWS. Those are Horry County, S.C., and Columbus Brunswick, Bladen, New Hanover and Pender counties in North Carolina.
In Horry County, the storm prompted schools to move to online learning Friday, Horry County Schools announced Wednesday.
A winter-weather advisory is underway in eight other counties in the Carolinas, the NWS said. Those are South Carolina’s Georgetown, Florence, Marion, Williamsburg, Darlington, Dillon and Marlboro, and Robeson County in North Carolina.