WEATHER-TRAFFIC UPDATE: Spotty sprinkles continue as wrecks stifle evening commute traffic

ATLANTA FORECAST

Friday: High: 48

Friday night: Low: 40

Saturday: High: 43

» For a detailed forecast, visit The Atlanta Journal-Constitution weather page.

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A few sprinkles continue falling in metro Atlanta on Friday afternoon, but it’s thankfully in the mid-40s and not cold enough to freeze on the roadways. 

That wasn’t the same story this morning in far North Georgia, where a little sleet and snow mixed with light rain was reported, Channel 2 Action News meteorologist Brad Nitz said.

 

Wrecks, not the weather, are causing most of the delays on Atlanta’s roads during the evening commute, according to the WSB 24-hour Traffic Center.

A crash is blocking all Ga. 78 eastbound lanes at Lawrenceville Highway in DeKalb County, the Traffic Center reported.

Also in DeKalb, two left lanes of I-20 West near Wesley Chapel Road are blocked by a wreck, according to the Traffic Center.

Drivers are also having to contend with familiar construction projects throughout the city. Crews are blocking all but a right lane on northbound Piedmont Road at Lenox Road in Buckhead, the Traffic Center reported. 

 

A right lane of Peachtree Road at Pharr Road is also blocked for roadwork, according to the Traffic Center.

The wet conditions Friday are light compared to what’s expected in the next 24 hours. Get ready for a cold and very messy weekend.

Rain could be heavy in metro Atlanta on Saturday and Sunday. The National Weather Service has issued a flood watch for all of north and central Georgia, scheduled to go into effect Saturday morning and expire Sunday night. 

 

In the northeast corner of the state, the rain could turn to ice and snow.

Winter storm watches have been issued for parts of northeast Georgia beginning Saturday night and ending Monday morning. One watch scheduled to go into effect at 7 p.m. Saturday covers Habersham and Rabun counties.

RELATED: WEATHER ALERT: Flood, winter storm watches issued for parts of North Georgia

Heavy mixed precipitation is possible, with total snow accumulations of 5 to 8 inches, according to the National Weather Service. Ice accumulation could be up to two-tenths of an inch, the Weather Service reported.

That watch is set to expire at noon Monday.

 

Lumpkin, Towns, Union and White counties are included in a second watch, which starts at 1 a.m. Sunday and expires at 1 a.m. Monday. Those areas could get anywhere from 1 to 2 inches of snow, with up to 5 inches possible on the highest ridges, according to the Weather Service. Lesser amounts are expected southeast of I-85 and across Habersham County.

 

“It’s (Saturday) night into Sunday when the possibility is there for some icy conditions, primarily for northeast Georgia and some of our eastern counties of the metro area. I can’t rule it out over Hall County and parts of northeastern Gwinnett.”

RELATED: Gwinnett schools keep eye on possible wintry weather

 

As for areas toward Atlanta and to the south, Minton said the storm will likely be all rain. 

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“It’s going to be wet, with some of the heaviest rains on the Southside,” she said. “Anywhere from 3 to 4 inches of rain are possible there.”

 

Temperatures are expected to be in the 40s on Saturday and in the mid-30s on Sunday in metro Atlanta. It will be windy, Minton said, with gusts as high as 30 mph at times.

As of Friday, most of metro Atlanta looks to stay ice-free over the weekend, according to Channel 2.

“Might be a different bet on Monday though as we do have that colder air sliding in, and there could be some precipitation left,” Minton said. “But that’s still days away, and we'll work on that over the next 48 hours.”

 

Nitz said confidence is still fairly low, but a rain and snow mix is possible across metro Atlanta Monday.

» For updated traffic information, listen to News 95.5 and AM 750 WSB and follow @ajcwsbtraffic on Twitter. 

» Download The Atlanta Journal-Constitution app for weather alerts on-the-go.

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