LUMBERTON — The chance of snow to welcome in 2018, which was briefly in the forecast for Robeson County on Wednesday, appears to have melted away.
But the cold endures.
“We are not calling for that right now,” Rick Kreitner, a National Weather Service forecaster, said about the possibility of snow next week. “The chances look fairly slim at the moment for snow.”
Kreitner then confirmed what local folks have found out the past couple of days.
“What we can tell you is it’s going to be really cold,” he said.
The forecast through Monday is for highs in the 40s during the day, except on Saturday, when temperatures will struggle to peak at 52 degrees, and lows overnight in the 20s. That is until New Year’s Day, when the overnight low is predicted to bottom out at 17 degrees.
“It looks like a really cold start to the New Year,” Kreitner said.
Then he added: “I’d say it’s going to be the lowest you’ll have this year, but it’s going to be a new year. It’s significantly lower than anything you’ve seen recently.”
When temperatures get into the teens they can be dangerous, so experts advise folks to bundle up in layers when going outside and wear a hat and gloves, and also not to leave pets outdoors for extended periods. Be careful with space heaters, keeping them at least 3 feet away from anything that might catch fire. If your home’s pipes are vulnerable, let water drip from a faucet to keep them from freezing.
If you know elderly folks who live alone, check on them.
Gov. Roy Cooper has signed an emergency declaration to allow heating fuel to be more easily distributed during the bitter cold snap. Cooper’s executive order loosens restrictions on drivers transporting heating fuels such as propane. It also puts in extra measures to prevent price gouging.
If your weekend plans include a beach trip, you might want to check to see if the roads are safe before heading that way.
A winter weather advisory was in effect Thursday for counties along the North Carolina and South Carolina coasts, with some freezing rain possible through this morning. Roads and bridges were being treated Thursday in South Carolina’s coastal counties because of the threat of ice.
Editor Donnie Douglas can be reached at 910-416-5649 or [email protected] The Associated Press contributed to this report.