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The original item was published from 2/20/2019 4:40:00 PM to 3/14/2019 9:35:19 AM.

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Danville, VA Local Government News and Announcements

Posted on: February 18, 2019

[ARCHIVED] City prepares for wintry mix snow, sleet and ice

UPDATE POSTED AT 10:45 A.M. TUESDAY: The Public Works Department is pretreating main thoroughfares today because of a wintry mix that is expected to begin this evening and continue overnight.

According to the latest forecast from the National Weather Service in Blacksburg, total accumulation of up to two inches of snow and sleet and up to one-tenth of an inch of ice is likely for the city.

“The bigger issue (than the snow) will be a transition from snow to sleet and freezing rain overnight,” meteorologist Jake Ruckman said Tuesday morning. “It will create a sloppy mess.”

Ruckman said the precipitation would begin between 8 p.m. to 10 p.m. as rain, with snow mixed in. By midnight, the precipitation will transition to snow, and then later transition to sleet and freezing rain.

“You probably will see it changing back and forth throughout the early morning hours,” Ruckman said. “We expect it to become rain only by 10 a.m. Wednesday.”

Temperatures are forecast to fall into the low 30s overnight, and on Wednesday reach a high near 34.

The National Weather Service has issued a winter weather advisory for Danville and the surrounding area. The advisory means that periods of snow, sleet or freezing rain will cause travel difficulties. The hazardous conditions could impact the Wednesday morning commute.

Public Works crews today are pretreating major thoroughfares and bridges with brine, which is a mixture of water and salt. The water in the brine evaporates, leaving the salt behind on the road. The salt breaks the bond between the snow and the roadway, and it, therefore, helps prevent the snow from freezing onto roads and bridges.

Residents and visitors are urged to proceed with caution when traveling. Only the major thoroughfares will be pretreated. Remember that your car cannot start, stop or turn as quickly and surely on snow and ice as it does on dry pavement, so think and drive accordingly, and be cautious driving and walking in parking lots.

Danville Utilities is monitoring the situation.

Residents and visitors can learn more about what to do in the event of power outages, and winter safety tips by visiting the City’s weather page: danvilleva.gov/weather.

If any resident or visitor needs shelter, then they should call the City of Danville non-emergency number, which is 434-799-5111, option 8. Arrangements for shelter will be made.

STORY POSTED 5 P.M. MONDAY

The National Weather Service this afternoon issued an updated forecast. Danville is now under a winter weather advisory, and the timing has changed, with the advisory taking effect at 8 p.m. Tuesday and continuing into late Wednesday.

Mixed precipitation is expected, with total snow accumulation of up to one inch and ice accumulation of up to one-tenth of an inch.

ORIGINAL STORY POSTED MONDAY MORNING:

The National Weather Service has issued a winter storm watch for Danville from Tuesday afternoon into Wednesday afternoon.

The watch means there is potential for significant snow, sleet or ice accumulation that may have an impact on travel. The storm is still evolving, and the amount and precipitation types likely will change over time. Residents and visitors should monitor the latest forecasts.

A strong area of high pressure will shift east into the northeastern section of the nation, and this will result in cold air wedging down the Appalachians. As the winter storm lifts northeast across our region, precipitation will spread north over this shallow dome of cold air, producing a wintery mix of snow, sleet and freezing rain across our region.

Total snow accumulations will vary from light amounts in the Piedmont to heavy snows in Southeast West Virginia and Alleghany Highlands of Virginia. The highest amounts of snow will occur in western Greenbrier where 4 to 8 inches are possible. Ice accumulations will range from a light glaze to around one-quarter of an inch.

The current forecast for Danville is for rain beginning after 5 p.m. Tuesday and then turning into a mix of rain, snow, and sleet overnight. A snow and sleet accumulation of less than one inch currently is forecast.

Danville Public Works Department crews are checking equipment and monitoring weather forecasts. Department Director Rick Drazenovich said a decision would be made on Tuesday morning on whether to pretreat major thoroughfares and bridges with brine, which is a mixture of water and salt. The water in the brine evaporates, leaving the salt behind on the road. The salt breaks the bond between the snow and the roadway, and it, therefore, helps prevent the snow from freezing onto roads and bridges.

The decision will be based in part on how much rain is expected in advance of the snow and sleet. Rain would wash away the brine, rendering the pretreatment ineffective.

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