Weathering still another winter storm

Published 12:24 am Thursday, February 10, 2011

Daily News Staff

Another winter storm targeted eastern North Carolina Wednesday night and today.
Contacted Wednesday afternoon, a busy meteorologist in the National Weather Service’s Newport office said she and her colleagues were still refining the forecast for Wednesday night through today.
Subsequent calls to the Newport office were met with a busy signal.
According to the weather service’s website, a winter storm warning was in effect from 10 p.m. Wednesday through 11 a.m. today.
The weather service forecast snow accumulations of 2 to 4 inches over inland areas with 1 to 3 inches along the coast. Isolated amounts of 5 inches were possible, the weather service advised.
The snow was expected to begin at midnight Wednesday and end late this morning or early this afternoon, if early forecasts held true.
Asked whether he was ready for snow, Chocowinity Mayor Jimmy Mobley replied, “I’ve got all I want to see. We’re in the South. We’re not supposed to have all this mess.”
Town crews will be out scraping roads once the snow falls, and the town has plenty of winter-weather supplies on hand, Mobley advised.
As the storm approached, area transportation workers, public-works crews and emergency-response personnel made preparations to deal with it.
City of Washington crews geared up Wednesday in preparation for the winter storm.
Lewis said the city has an adequate supply of salt used for application to city streets.
If conditions warrant, additional troopers would be called in to work, he said.
Area grocery stores apparently were seeing the usual presnowfall runs on staple goods like bread and milk, but none reported shortages of these items as of Wednesday afternoon.
Despite frequent snowfalls late last year and early this year, Beaufort County’s public-schools students haven’t had to make up many school days.
By Hodges’ records, the school system’s students have missed just two days because of inclement weather in the current school year that began last fall.
One of the made-up days, Sept. 30, 2010, was missed because of flooding associated with tropical rains. Students made up that day on Monday, Hodges pointed out.
Asked whether she was excited about the chance of snow, Hodges remarked, “It needs to go ahead and be a couple of feet for me to be excited about it.”
Although in an area that, for the most part, experiences mild winters, Beaufort County has seen its share of severe winter storms.
From 1993 through 2003, there were 13 severe winter storms in Beaufort County which resulted in power outages, stranded people and immobilized traffic, according to Beaufort County’s current Multi-jurisdictional Hazard Mitigation Plan.
Since the 2005 adoption of the county’s plan, there have been eight additional severe winter storms. The dates and circumstances of those storms follow:
In the last month of 2010, the county had at least three snow events.
Snow fell in Beaufort County on Dec. 4, 2010.
Snow, sleet and freezing rain fell in Beaufort County on Dec. 16, 2010.
On average, about 6 inches of snow fell throughout Beaufort County on Dec. 26, 2010, according to various weather-related sources.