Update: No Snow Accumulations Predicted, Black Ice Likely
Douglas County is still under a winter storm watch but no snow accumulations are predicted. Rain predicted to end at about 1 p.m. today.
The National Weather Service has placed all of North Georgia, including Douglas County, under a Winter Storm Watch until mid- to late-morning on Friday, Jan. 18. A Winter Storm Watch indicates that conditions may develop for winter precipitation. The National Weather Services does not anticipate issuing a Winter Storm Warning for Douglas County or the metro Atlanta area.
A strong upper level low was located above Meridian, Mississippi, about 7 a.m. Thursday morning and was predicted to track to the northeast across Alabama and Georgia. The rain ahead of this low pressure area is what Douglas County is currently experiencing, and should end about 1 p.m. Thursday.
The low will have wraparound moisture, i.e., precipitation on the back side of the low/after the low passes, and this is the precipitation that includes rain, mixture of rain/snow, and snow for Georgia. The wraparound moisture is expected to come through Douglas County between 5 p.m. to midnight Thursday night. All precipitation is predicted to be out of Douglas County by 1 a.m. Friday morning.
Douglas County may see a mix of precipitation - rain with snow at times - but no accumulations are anticipated. There may be a dusting of snow on grassy and elevated surfaces but the soil temperature remains at about 56 degrees which is too warm for snow to stick.
Douglas County has received about three inches of rain during this weather event.
Black ice on bridges and overpasses, however, is likely Thursday night beginning about midnight. The temperature is anticipated to drop below freezing about midnight and not rise above freezing until mid-morning Friday. During that time, ice may form on surfaces where cold air is above and below the surface. Motorists are advised to be extremely careful when driving Thursday night and early Friday morning. The Douglas County Department of Transportation is aware of the predicted conditions and is mobilizing its crews to address any black ice issues that may arise.
The high temperature for Friday is predicted to be about 50 degrees, so any ice patches or snow dusting will quickly melt.