HENRY COUNTY– This past weekend, we experienced our first taste of winter with a mix of snow, sleet and ice, of the new year.
This winter storm was much different from our last one in December. As you may recall, we saw record one day snowfall totals, with little sleet and ice accumulation. A month later, more ice and sleet accumulated than anything else.
Winter Storm Gia developed in the Pacific Ocean around the January 4-5 time frame and made it on to the Untied States soil around January 7-8. This storm was in a hurry to travel across the USA as it made impact to our coverage area.
This storm is responsible for 13 deaths and for leaving thousands in the dark in the Midwest and several hundred in our area.
According to Appalachian Power's website, Sunday night, over 700 in Henry County and 330 in Patrick County are in the dark. Parts of Franklin County had a little over 60 outages. Most of the power is expected to be restored by 6 PM Tuesday night.
As you were watching the precipitation take aim in our area, not much accumulation added up. In Martinsville City, at least 0.50 to 1.00 inch of snow fell and that's the same story in other parts of our area.
The main concern was the amount of ice and sleet that was measured. Our coverage area ranged from 0.10 to 0.30 tenths, with a few higher amounts near the Virginia and North Carolina border and east of our area.
As we head into overnight hours this week, the main concern will be refreezing. Forecasted high temperatures will warm into the 40's and overnight lows remaining in the mid 20's to low 30's.
VDOT is continuing to warn drivers in the early morning hours as black ice will be an issue, especially on secondary roads.