LATEST UPDATE 6:30 PM THURSDAY. This story will be updated through Friday morning as government agencies and the school system release new information. Old information will be deleted.
Eastern North Carolina will be impacted by a winter storm Thursday evening through Friday morning. Depending on location, the National Weather Service’s 4 pm update says we can expect between trace amounts and 2 inches of snow.
Want more detail? Take a look at our individual snowcasts for Eastern Carteret communities.
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Public School System
Carteret County Public Schools will be closed Friday. CCPS issued this statement around 3:45 pm:
“Carteret County Public Schools will be closed tomorrow, Friday, February 21, for students. This decision was made based on information from NOAA forecasters and Carteret County EMS.
“It is always difficult to change the school calendar because it impacts the instruction of our schools and it impacts families with work schedules, child care and more. However, the safety of students, employees and their families is the number one concern. Forecasters predict the temperatures across the county between 5 and 9 a.m. to be at freezing with a trace to 2 inches of snow. This is the time window when buses, student drivers, employees and parents are traveling to school.
“NOAA forecasters believe most of the snow will be on the grassy areas, with smaller amounts on the roadways, particularly on secondary roads. There is concern about the condition of the many bridges in Carteret County. During this same time window there will be elevated tides, coastal flooding and strong, gusty winds, particularly in the Down East area.
“A delay was considered but forecasters state that the early morning weather conditions will remain the same through late morning. This decision was made with the best information on hand as possible. No one has a crystal ball, although we wish one existed.
“School system staff members will receive an email and a phone message shortly about plans for their work tomorrow.”
- Gramercy Christian has canceled school Friday.
- Tiller School has canceled school Friday.
- St. Egbert has canceled school Friday.
Carteret Community College
“Carteret Community College will be closed on Friday, February 21, 2020 due to adverse weather. Saturday classes (February 22) will operate on a regular schedule.”
Due to the impending winter weather event, Carteret County Government non-essential offices and CCATS will operate tomorrow; Friday, February 21, on a two hour delay.
Weather Advisories Issued
Three advisories from the National Weather Service Morehead City/Newport will go into effect tonight:
Winter Weather Advisory: In effect 10 tonight to 10 am Friday for all of Carteret. Snow and rain after midnight, tapering off Friday morning, with gusty winds continuing through the day. Plan on slippery road conditions.
Wind Advisory: In effect from 7 tonight until 4 pm Friday for Eastern Carteret. North winds 25 to 35 mph with gusts up to 50 mph expected. Highest winds will be in Cedar Island area.
Coastal Flooding Advisory: In effect from 7 tonight until 7 pm Friday for Eastern Carteret. 1 to 2 feet with local rises up to 3 feet of inundation above ground level expected in low-lying areas near shorelines and tidal waterways. Includes areas along the lower Neuse River, Pamlico, Core and Back Sounds, and adjacent tidal creeks. Cedar Island and Atlantic area is most likely to see 3 feet. Isolated road closures possible.
Public Health & Safety
Carteret County government released the following statement late this afternoon:
“Emergency Services personnel are continuing to monitor the winter weather forecast that will impact our area tonight through Friday morning.
“Residents who must travel in the affected areas are advised to slow down and drive with extreme caution. Those who are staying home are also urged to make plans for possible loss of power.
“Residents should follow the instructions of state and local officials and listen to local radio or TV stations for updated emergency information. If you are told to stay off the roads, stay home. When it is safe, check on neighbors or friends nearby who may need assistance or extra support.”
County officials issued the following precautions this morning:
- Keep your radio or television tuned to a local station to keep informed of current weather conditions.
- Be prepared for isolation at home by keeping adequate supplies of heating fuel, non-perishable food, water, flashlights with extra batteries, first aid supplies, extra blankets, and a battery-powered radio. A fire extinguisher is also recommended, in case the help of a fire department is not available.
- Keep some kind of emergency heating equipment and fuel on hand so you can keep at least one room of your house livable in case your power is off. Keep the room ventilated to avoid the buildup of toxic fumes.
- Stay indoors as much as possible. If you must go outdoors, dress warmly, in loose-fitting, layered, lightweight clothing. Your outer garment should be water repellent.
- Avoid driving if you can. If you must use your car, make sure that it is in good working condition and filled with gas. Keep emergency supplies in the car, such as a shovel, extra gloves and hats, a blanket, a flashlight with extra batteries, food, a towrope or chain, and extra money. Travel by daylight and use major roadways whenever possible. Most importantly, drive with extreme caution.
Outages & Travel Hazards
Major or long-term power outages and travel hazards will be listed here. To keep up with minor Duke and CCEC outages follow their respective links below.
- Temperatures are expected to drop to or below freezing in most areas of the county after midnight into rush hour Friday morning, meaning roads will be slippery. Bridges are especially dangerous, as they cool down much faster.