Officials are urging people to be ready for frigid weather that is expected to surge into North Carolina and surrounding states overnight Saturday and last several days.
“Preparations for this dangerously cold period should be completed by (Saturday) afternoon,” the National Weather Service said in a hazardous weather statement for central N.C. Hazardous weather notices were issued for most of North Carolina and Virginia, and parts of Georgia, South Carolina, and Tennessee.
Wind chill values in the high single digits in the Piedmont and in the teens elsewhere are expected Sunday morning, the weather service said. That begins the coldest stretch, which officials say will last through Tuesday night.
That means a cold time is in store for people planning to attend New Year’s celebrations held outdoors.
For First Night Raleigh, ABC11 meteorologist Steve Stewart said he anticipates temperatures in the mid-20s by the time of the early acorn drop for kids at 7 p.m., and values closer to 20 degrees at the time the big acorn drops at midnight.
The ABC11 forecast calls for highs of 34, 29 and 32 from Sunday to Tuesday – almost 20 degrees below normal temperatures to start the new year, meteorologist Brittany Bell said.
The forecast shows lows of 16, 14 and 17 degrees from Sunday night through Tuesday.
Most of central N.C. will remain below freezing for three to four consecutive days, the weather service said.
“Associated wind chill values Monday and Tuesday morning will be in the single digits, with some as low as a few degrees below zero across the northern Piedmont,” the NWS report said. “A wind chill advisory may be issued.”