More than three inches of snow and sleet accumulated in parts of central North Carolina by Monday evening, and was still falling.
The National Weather Service issued a winter weather advisory for parts of central North Carolina, including Wake, Chatham, Orange, Durham, Johnston and Harnett counties, and the Coastal Plains between 2 p.m. and 10 p.m. Monday.
Early snowfall totals released at 6 p.m. by the weather service's Easter Region showed 7 inches in Baldwin, 5.8 inches in Glade Valley, 5.5 inches in Monticello, 4.8 inches in Sparta and Boone, 3.5 inches in Roxboro, 2.5 inches in King, 2 inches in Lenoir, 1.3 inches in Greensboro, 1 inch in Wake Forest and 0.7 inches in Raleigh.
Sleet and snow began in the Triangle at about 3 p.m. on Monday, mixing with freezing rain. The N.C. Department of Transportation reported that black ice had begun to form in parts of the Triangle during rush hour.
Less than an inch of snow was expected to accumulate because of warm ground temperatures and wet roads, but roads were expected to be hazardous through Tuesday.
“The calendar may say spring starts next week, but it is still winter in North Carolina,” Gov. Roy Cooper said at Monday’s press conference.
More snow could accumulate in the Triangle during heavier periods of precipitation as the storm intensifies.
“Even though the forecast tells us this storm will be short-lived, driving will remain hazardous,” Cooper said. “We’re ready at the state level to treat and clear roads and keep people safe.”
The snow and rain mix should end around 8 p.m., ABC11 meteorologist Don Schwenneker said. Monday night was expected to be cold, with lows in the upper 20s to low 30s, and windy, with sustained winds of 10 to 20 mph and gusts up to 25 mph.
Black ice was expected to be a problem Tuesday across central North Carolina, according to the weather service..
“Snow is falling in some parts of our state, making for a messy and possibly dangerous commute for many people,” Cooper said. “It’s more than forecasters predicted. I don’t think we thought we would be here (holding a press conference) yesterday. We do have to be concerned. We’d rather be over-prepared than under-prepared.”
Cooper said as of Monday afternoon, he does not anticipate declaring a state of emergency.
Tuesday will be cold and windy with some slick spots on roads, clear skies, lows in the upper 20s and highs in the 40s and 50s.