Wintry mix moves in, but won’t stick around long

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There’s a good chance that all you’ll see outside your window Saturday is rain.

The dreaded wintry mix that looks pretty on the trees, but makes a mess of the roads should be gone.

Even if you happened to be up early enough to see frozen precipitation, there’s no need to grab the sleds. It won’t stick around, according to Channel 2 Action News meteorologist Brad Nitz.

“It comes and goes pretty quickly,” Nitz said.

Friday nights, many roads in Forsyth and Cherokee counties were already iced over, prompting emergency officials to ask residents to avoid traveling.

“We have reports of black ice all over roadways coming in all over Forsyth County,” the county’s sheriff’s office posted on its Facebook page. “These roads appear fine but are very slick! We have accidents happening very frequently.”

In Acworth, patches of ice were spotted on some streets, and the city’s road crews were identifying critical areas for salt and sand, according to police.

By Saturday afternoon, expect rain and maybe even thunder, Nitz said. And temperatures will climb into the lower 50s — a big warm-up from the work week. After a 16-degree Friday morning that tied a record set for the day in 1934, metro area temperatures by late afternoon were above freezing. Then, it started getting colder again.

While metro Atlanta should dodge much of the latest winter storm, those in north Georgia likely won’t be as lucky. Flurries dusted the ground Friday afternoon in the Atlanta area. But counties north were bracing for much more.

The National Weather Service issued a winter weather advisory through 1 p.m. Saturday for most of metro Atlanta. Cobb, Fulton, Gwinnett, DeKalb, Rockdale, Barrow, Walton, Newton, Paulding and Polk counties as well as the Athens area are included in the advisory. Up to an inch of snow and .10 of an inch of ice is possible in those areas, according to the NWS.

A winter storm warning — meaning significant amounts of snow, sleet and ice are expected — is in effect through 1 p.m. Saturday for north Georgia counties, the NWS said.

Bartow, Cherokee, Forsyth, Hall and Dawson counties are included in the warning, which also includes the remainder of north Georgia except the northeast corner of the state. Between 1 to 3 inches of snow and up to a .25 inch of ice is in the forecast for north Georgia.

In Cherokee County, crews were on standby late Friday at the county’s Emergency Operations Center, Lt. Jay Baker with the sheriff’s office said.

“We’ll be here all night, waiting and monitoring the weather,” Baker said. “We’re prepared to alert residents quickly when the storm hits.”

“Ice” is the last word those affected by a winter storm earlier this week want to hear. Thousands of residents lost power when a winter blast caused ice-laden trees and power lines to fall. As crews restored power Friday to the last of those without it, they were preparing for another round of possible outages.

Road crews were also busy Friday, hoping to get ahead of the wintry precipitation.

The Georgia Department of Transportation loaded up thousands of gallons of liquid brine at a facility early Friday in Forest Park and crews hit the interstates. GDOT said it has been treating every major north Georgia interstate up to the Tennessee state line.

By Saturday afternoon, any precipitation falling will be rain, as temperatures warm to the low 50s, Nitz said. Showers are expected again Sunday, which is expected to warm into the upper 50s, he said. The weekend should feel drastically warmer than the teen temperatures Friday morning across the metro area.