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Wintry mix falls in area
Henry County schools, PHCC open late; Patrick schools closed
Tuesday, March 4, 2014
By PAUL COLLINS - Bulletin Staff Writer
Motorists should be on the lookout for possible icy spots through mid-day today, according to Phil Hysell, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service Office in Blacksburg.
The National Weather Service forecast Monday was calling for up to an inch of snow and/or sleet in Henry County and up to two inches in higher elevations in Patrick County. The precipitation was expected to taper off Monday afternoon and evening, Hysell said.
The temperature was forecast to fall into the teens overnight, which could cause icy spots on roads as motorists venture out this morning, he said. However, the weather is forecast to be sunny today with highs in the mid- to upper 30s.
Henry County Schools and Patrick Henry Community College are opening on two-hour delayed schedules today, and Martinsville and Patrick County Schools are closed.
John Coffey, maintenance manager with the Virginia Department of Transportation, said early Monday afternoon that roads were clear in Henry and Patrick counties as snow melted because of the warmer ground temperature. At that time, there was no accumulation on the roads and only a trace on the grass, he said.
“We are treating bridge decks and cold places (such as shady areas) with a mixture of salt and abrasive material,” he said.
“If it begins to snow heavily,” VDOT would begin to treat all roads with salt and get into road plowing, he added.
VDOT was monitoring around the clock and will have crews working through today, Coffey said.
Martinsville City Manager Leon Towarnicki said early Monday afternoon that he did not anticipate the city having to take action, but that if weather conditions worsened a road crew would be called in Monday night.
The Henry County, Patrick County and Martinsville school divisions; Carlisle School; and Patrick Henry Community College were closed Monday.
According to the National Weather Service, the forecast for Martinsville was partly cloudy tonight with a low around 22 degrees; mostly sunny Wednesday during the day with a high near 48; and mostly cloudy Wednesday night, with a low around 26. Highs are expected to reach the upper 40s by Friday, but there will again be a chance of rain or snow, the forecast showed.