Asheville area readies for winter storm ***UPDATED 9 a.m.***

TUESDAY, OCT. 30: Post-tropical cyclone Sandy made landfall Monday night near Atlantic City, N.J. Heavy rains, flooding, downed trees and millions without power mark the storm’s effect on the East Coast.

In Western North Carolina, Madison and other mountain counties report snowfall this morning. The Leicester area of Buncombe County reports 3 inches of snow in some locations, according to the National Weather Service. The unofficial snow tally notes 3 inches of snow in Haywood County, and 4 inches in both Transylvania and Mitchell County. Parts of Madison County may have 6 inches. Many mountain-county schools are closed and others delayed opening this morning.

The Winter Storm Warning remains in effect through Wednesday morning.

The Asheville area is readying for heavy snow, one consequence of Sandy, the massive storm currently battering the East Coast. The National Weather Service has issued a winter storm warning for the whole area, including Buncombe County, until 6 a.m. Wednesday, Oct. 31.

The NWS’ map predicts about 2.6 inches in Buncombe County, with snow picking up late this afternoon, though the warning notes that “total snow accumulations, and how much falls in valley locations, will continue to depend on the exact track of Sandy and the associated moisture.” Hazards include “heavy snow as well as periods of low visibility, falling temperatures causing treacherous road conditions.”

Monday afternoon, Gov. Bev Perdue officially declared a state of emergency throughout the 24 counties of WNC in anticipation of the coming storm.

According to spokesperson Dawa Hitch, the city of Asheville is ready for snow.

“City Staff will continue to monitor the storm, making normal preparations for a snow event throughout the course of the day,” she writes to Xpress. “At this time, equipment is being fitted for snow fighting purposes. There will be a night crew on duty tonight to monitor and treat roads.”

Buncombe County Emergency Services Director Jerry VeHaun says he’s in “wait and see mode.”

“We’re trying to figure out what it’s going to do,” VeHaun tells Xpress. “We’ve been getting information from the state emergency management organization, but so far it’s all over the board. They’re talking about wind, they’re still talking about some snow — maybe 2 inches — but so far we don’t know when or what.”

VeHaun added that crews are prepared to deal with snow, and that the county doesn’t have any closures to announce yet.

Right now, the city plans to continue its normal hours and services tomorrow.

The NWS warning advises against travel unless an emergency.


Thanks for reading through to the end…

We share your inclination to get the whole story. For the past 25 years, Xpress has been committed to in-depth, balanced reporting about the greater Asheville area. We want everyone to have access to our stories. That’s a big part of why we've never charged for the paper or put up a paywall.

We’re pretty sure that you know journalism faces big challenges these days. Advertising no longer pays the whole cost. Media outlets around the country are asking their readers to chip in. Xpress needs help, too. We hope you’ll consider signing up to be a member of Xpress. For as little as $5 a month — the cost of a craft beer or kombucha — you can help keep local journalism strong. It only takes a moment.

Before you comment

The comments section is here to provide a platform for civil dialogue on the issues we face together as a local community. Xpress is committed to offering this platform for all voices, but when the tone of the discussion gets nasty or strays off topic, we believe many people choose not to participate. Xpress editors are determined to moderate comments to ensure a constructive interchange is maintained. All comments judged not to be in keeping with the spirit of civil discourse will be removed and repeat violators will be banned. See here for our terms of service. Thank you for being part of this effort to promote respectful discussion.

Leave a Reply

To leave a reply you may Login with your Mountain Xpress account, connect socially or enter your name and e-mail. Your e-mail address will not be published. All fields are required.