0

Snow falls early, but ice a big concern overnight into Wednesday

A sign warns drivers on Tuesday morning of snow and ice on Interstate 85 in Gwinnett. (Staff Photo: Jason Braverman)

A sign warns drivers on Tuesday morning of snow and ice on Interstate 85 in Gwinnett. (Staff Photo: Jason Braverman)

Interstate 85 was the dividing line for snow Tuesday morning, officials said, as they worked to treat roads made hazardous by the first of two waves of winter weather.

The National Weather Service has issued a winter storm warning for all of North Georgia, including Gwinnett, which won't expire until 1 p.m. on Thursday.

Snow was falling just before 7 a.m. Tuesday in much of north Georgia, including Gwinnett, but not sticking to the roadways.

“I-85 is the dividing line between snow and sleet or rain right now - snow north of I-85 and sleet or rain south. Currently it is snowing in Dawson, Forsyth, Gwinnett, Habersham, Hall, Lumpkin, Rabun, Towns, Union and White County but not sticking to the roadways,” said Bayne Smith, district engineer for Northeast Georgia, who added that crews are plowing snow in the mountains.”We ask you to please stay home and not drive unless it is necessitated by an emergency.”

This weather event, which includes freezing rain and ice, is expected to last until noon. Then pick up again overnight, as temperatures are expected to be significantly colder, heightening the risk for ice accumulation through Thursday.

Transportation officials continue to encourage people to stay home, so crews can effectively treat the roadway, and many schools and governments have closed offices. More closures are due for Thursday.

On Wednesday morning, the Hall County Sheriff's Office temporarily closed Interstate 985 north at Ga. Highway 53/Mundy Mill Road after a crash and icing were reported. The road was reopened by 10:30 a.m.

The interstate remained open southbound.

The NWS report said additional snow is likely Tuesday night through Wednesday. In addition, around a 1/4 of an inch of ice is possible.

"Widespread power outages are possible," the report said.

Return to www.gwinnettdailypost.com for updates.