A coastal storm system is expected to bring a rare snowfall to the Carolinas beaches Wednesday and then usher in another surge of very cold air.
Forecasters say they don’t expect snow to spread as far inland as the Rock Hill area, but they note that some computer guidance indicates light snow might reach the Interstate 77 corridor.
“We doubt that, in the end, anything significant would fall, but taking into account antecedent conditions, which are very cold, it would only take a dusting to cause road problems,” said Trish Palmer, of the National Weather Service office in Greer.
Palmer said Tuesday afternoon that people who live on the east and southeast side of the Charlotte metro area should check the forecast Wednesday before making decisions for the day.
The frozen precipitation is more certain along the coast, and a Winter Storm Warning is in effect from northern Florida up through coastal areas of Georgia and the Carolinas.
The Weather Service is predicting 1 to 3 inches of snow and sleet for places such as Charleston and Myrtle Beach, and slightly heavier amounts for the Wilmington area in North Carolina.
Possibly an inch could fall as far inland as Florence, forecasters say.
The snow and sleet is expected to fall Wednesday and end by late afternoon. As the storm system moves up the coast, it will help drag another surge of arctic air southward.
Forecasters say freezing temperatures could reach as far south as Tampa.
In the Rock Hill area, it means afternoon highs barely reaching freezing from Thursday through Saturday, with morning lows in the mid teens. The temperature dropped to 8 degrees Tuesday morning at the Rock Hill/York County Airport – the coldest reading since February 2015.
Milder conditions are expected by early next week, but forecasters say a storm system could bring some snow to the Rock Hill area early Monday before changing to rain. They note that it’s too early to pin down precipitation amounts, however.