Rain, below freezing temps ahead; snow unlikely

Published 1:40 pm Monday, January 28, 2019

Much of Alabama is expected to get snow overnight and into Tuesday morning, but that likely won’t be the case for Pike County according to National Weather Service meteorologists.

“We’ll start out with rain chances mainly after midnight of about 50 percent and then they just get higher by 6 a.m. – and that will be rain,” said meteorologist Jason Holmes. “We may get a brief mix there between 9 or 10 a.m. and 1 p.m., but we’re not expecting it to amount enough to bring any accumulation. We really don’t get any temperatures below freezing until late tomorrow afternoon.”

Holmes said the Pike County is “dodging a bullet” as the northern parts of the state will face snow accumulation and potentially dangerous roadways.

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“The temperatures there will be below freezing before the moisture moves out, so it could stick to road surfaces could freeze as ice,” Holmes said. “Thankfully, we’re not looking at much in the way of travel issues in the Troy area.”

Gov. Kay Ivey issued a State of Emergency effective at 3:00 p.m. Monday for all Alabama counties in preparation for potential winter weather. The National Weather Service has issued a Winter Storm Warning and Winter Weather Advisory for a large portion of Alabama in anticipation of rain, snow, and freezing temperatures.

Holmes said Pike County is not under any advisories right now, but residents should still keep up-to-date to ensure the forecast does not change.

The bigger concern for Pike County residents will be below-freezing temperatures on Tuesday and Wednesday nights, Holmes said, with a low of 23 forecast for Tuesday night and 25 for Wednesday night.

Herb Reeves, Pike County EMA director, said the state of emergency does not mean that Pike County is expected to have an emergency-level weather event.

“While there may be some snow flurries tomorrow, the bigger concern is tomorrow night with the temperature falling out,” Reeves said. “This may be more of a Tuesday night or Wednesday morning event. We could get some freezing temperatures, and if there is water standing somewhere it could freeze over. We’re surely going to tell people once the cold weather comes in to exercise judgment on bridges and roadways just to be cautious. Right now, there’s no expectation to close any roads or anything.”

Reeves is also the dean of student services at Troy University and said there are no plans for the campus to close or classes to be cancelled due to the weather.

“It’s going to be business as usual,” Reeves said. “The only concern is at the Montgomery campus possibly. Any students commuting from the north, of course, should exercise judgment over whether to the roads are safe in their area.”

Reeves said he also expects local schools to remain open throughout the weather event at this time.

So far, the city has not decided to open the Troy Recreation Center as a warming center for the two below-freezing nights forecast this week.

“Right now, we have not made any plans to do that,” Reeves said. “We’ll take a look at the need to open that if necessary. We’ll talk to the mayor and commission chair if that’s what we need to do and if we have a request for it from people that need those services.”

As always, there are a few god practices to follow when the temperature drops below the freezing point.