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(SATURDAY MORNING UPDATE) Earlier today, the National Weather Service issued a winter storm warning that includes Danville and is effective at 10 p.m. The warning means the city will experience severe winter conditions.
According to the National Weather Service office in Blacksburg, a small band of snow will pass through the area in the late evening, and leave a dusting of snow. There will be a 3-4 hour break and then precipitation will return, bringing snow at a heavier rate.
At daybreak, the precipitation will transition to a mix of snow and sleet. By noon, there will be a changeover to freezing rain; and later in the day, to rain only.
Total accumulations of 2 inches of snow and two-tenths of ice are likely, but the amounts could vary depending on the timing of the changeover from one type to the other. The bigger concern is the ice, which could lead to power outages.
Public Works crews will report to duty this evening and will work 12-hour, around-the-clock shifts. Utilities crews will be on standby and are ready to respond as needed.
FRIDAY AFTERNOON UPDATE
The National Weather Service this afternoon, as expected, issued a winter storm watch that included Danville.
A winter storm watch is issued 24 to 36 hours in advance of a storm that has a potential for severe winter conditions. Residents and visitors should stay weather aware, listen for further information, and prepare for what to do if severe conditions materialize.
ORIGINAL POST ON FRIDAY MORNING
The Public Works Department is pretreating main thoroughfares, bridges and overpasses today because of a winter storm that is expected to bring a mix of snow, sleet and freezing rain beginning around midnight Saturday and continuing into Sunday.
The National Weather Service in Blacksburg has not yet issued a winter weather advisory for Danville, but is expected to do so later today.
Meteorologist Reggie Roakes said a low-pressure system moving across the Ohio Valley will ride over the area and bring a wintry mix.
“The precipitation is temperature dependent,” Roakes said. “You are going to receive impactful precipitation no matter what.”
The precipitation will begin as snow and then transition to sleet and freezing rain and later to rain as temperatures warm. Accumulations will depend on how quickly the transition takes place, with snow accumulations ranging from one to two inches and ice accumulations ranging from a tenth of an inch to a quarter of an inch.
Residents and visitors should monitor the latest forecasts for any changes in track and timing.
Public Works crews today are pretreating major thoroughfares, bridges, and overpasses 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 sleet and the roadway, and it, therefore, helps prevent the precipitation from freezing onto roads and bridges.
Residential streets are not pretreated.
Crews are prepared for round-the-clock snow removal operations. They will begin plowing road surfaces when one inch of snow has accumulated. Plowing continues only on the highest traffic volume roads until the end of the snow event.
When the snow event has ended, and the main thoroughfares are cleared, crews then will move to collector streets, which connect the main thoroughfares to neighborhoods. The final stage will be residential streets.
Residents and visitors are urged to proceed with caution. Only the major thoroughfares will be pretreated. Remember that your car cannot start, stop or turn as quickly and surely on snow 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. Crews will be ready to respond as needed through the weekend in the event of power outages.
Residents and visitors can learn more about what to do in the event of power outages and read other 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.