MARTIN COUNTY, N.C. (WITN) - Freezing temperatures throughout the afternoon set the stage for wintry precipitation, making roads unsafe to drive on.
Department of Transportation trucks were seen treating roadways around Highway 17 hours before the storm was forecasted to begin.
Williamston Fire, Rescue, and EMS were at the ready for any emergency calls. As of noon, fire captain David Bonds was urging drivers to make plans to stay at home.
“We would prefer people stayed off the roadways once the storm does get here just because of the impact that it has for our first responders and also for our DOT workers,” Bonds said. “We have five on duty right now of our normal career staff, and we’re going to be looking at bringing in an additional five guys this evening. That way, we’ve got extra coverage.”
Around 4:00 p.m. sleet fell, accumulating alongside the roadways.
Spanning over the next several hours, there will be a mix of sleet and rain-wet roadways. Freezing air, ground, and soil temperatures quickly made roads hazardous to drive with ice accumulating on busy intersections and poorly lit roadways.
Martin County is forecasted to accumulate two to four inches of snow overnight and around one-tenth of an inch of ice.
While these predictions may not be severe enough to cause mass power outages, they do make for unsafe conditions outside.
Temperatures are going to stay in the freezing range across Eastern Carolina tonight.
For Martin County residents, Captain Bonds advised, “Be mindful of what you’re using for a heating source and of how much you plug into one outlet. Limit the use of any types of drop cords when you’re using heating systems, just for the simple fact that it could potentially cause a short.”
The Williamston Fire, Rescue, and EMS squads will be on call for emergency assistance during the storm.