A Winter Storm Warning is now in effect from Saturday night to Sunday night, according to the National Weather Service's latest forecast.
The storm will move into the area Saturday night and continue throughout Sunday.
A Major Winter Storm will move into the area tonight and persist through Sunday. Make plans today for possible long-term power outages and hazardous driving conditions Sunday into Monday. #scwx #ncwx #avlwx #cltwx #gawx pic.twitter.com/5OcVlk2byM
— NWS GSP (@NWSGSP) January 15, 2022
The storm will begin with a period of cold rain Saturday evening. Following the rain a mix of sleet and snow will start around 3 a.m., continuing into daybreak.
"Then we'll transition into freezing rain after daybreak which will continue until about one or two o'clock in the Greenville-Spartanburg area. So that's about seven hours of freezing rain," National Weather Meteorologist Scott Krentz said.
Two to five inches of sleet, snow and ice are expected in South Carolina and ice accumulations of one quarter to one half inch with light sleet and snow accumulations are expected with winds gusting as high as 35 mph.
"It's enough to bring down small branches and trees," Krentz said.
Travel could be nearly impossible across the entire area. At least scattered power outages and tree damage are likely across the Piedmont due to the ice as well as gusty winds, according to National Weather Service's Winter Storm Warning.
Black ice could be a problem each morning early next week, the weather service said.
Greenville County and Spartanburg County are expected to see a total ice accumulation of 0.1 to 0.25 inches while Anderson County is expected to see 0.25 to 0.5 inches of ice, according to the National Weather Service.
Late Friday afternoon, Gov. Henry McMaster declared a state of emergency for this weekend's winter storm and urged residents to monitor local weather conditions and take safety precautions.
"South Carolina will be impacted by a major winter storm this weekend," McMaster said in astatement. "There is a potential for very dangerous conditions caused by accumulations of ice and snow, which will likely result in power outages across the state."
With extreme weather like ice and freezing rain, Laurens Electric Cooperative is planning for potential widespread outages. The co-op has prepared extra supplies, has crews on stand-by and has emergency call-center capabilities in case of widespread outages.
Check on the elderly, get prescriptions: How to prepare for the winter storm in Greenville
The co-op currently has 100 additional personnel on stand-by with staff and line crews on-call 24 hours a day to work on any outages, according to the co-op.
Depending on the impact of the weather, Duke Energy can bring in additional workers from its Southeast utilities and/or activate mutual aid agreements to enlist help from other utilities across the United States.
Tamia Boyd is a Michigan native who covers breaking news in Greenville. Email her at email@example.com, and follow her on Twitter @tamiamb.
This article originally appeared on Greenville News: Winter Storm Warning: Greenville SC weather forecast Saturday