RALEIGH, N.C. (WTVD) -- Unseasonably cold temperatures are about to take over in central North Carolina, but they will not bring any significant snow to the area.
Before the arctic blast arrives, a cold front will bring heavy rain to the area.
That rain will moves in from the south Wednesday night -- with some showers arriving in the Sandhills before midnight. But the bulk of the rain pushes through central North Carolina early Thursday morning.
The heaviest rain will likely fall in the Triangle during the morning commute and through lunchtime. Most of the rain will be gone by early-to-mid afternoon. However, a second round of showers will move in again late Thursday night into Friday morning.
Then, when the rain has finished, the cold front really takes over.
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Friday morning feels-like temperatures will start in the 50s and even 60s. However, by around 9 a.m. they will fall into the 20s and 30s. Then by noon or early afternoon the feels-like temperatures will be in the teens.
That arctic blast will stick around all afternoon, with high temperatures Saturday and Sunday settling in the low to mid 30s. Overnight lows will dip into the teens Saturday, Sunday and Monday.
These dramatically cold temperatures caused Gov. Roy Cooper to declare a state of emergency on Tuesday. The move activates the state's emergency operation plan, easing regulations to transport fuel and critical supplies, helping first responders, and protecting consumers from price gouging.
Icy conditions are possible in the western part of the state and below-average temperatures are expected as an arctic mass approaches.
"We know that with the extremely low temperatures North Carolinians will need propane and other heating fuel to keep their families warm," Cooper said. "While propane supplies are strong in the state, there is a limited supply of licensed commercial truck drivers, which is being further exacerbated by COVID and flu outbreaks. The State of Emergency will help ease some restrictions and allow heating fuel companies to keep up with demand."
Prep your home for cold weather
North Carolina Emergency Management advises residents and visitors to follow these tips:
- Pay close attention to your local forecast and be prepared for what's expected in your area.
- Keep cell phones, mobile devices and spare batteries charged.
- Use a National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration weather radio or a weather alert app on your phone to receive emergency weather alerts.
- Dress warmly. Wear multiple layers of thin clothing instead of a single layer of thick clothing.
- Store an emergency kit in your vehicle. Include a scraper, jumper cables, tow chain, sand/salt, blankets, flashlight, first-aid kit and road map.
- Gather emergency supplies for your pet including leash and feeding supplies, enough food for several days and a pet travel carrier.
- Do not leave pets outside for long periods of time during freezing weather.
- Look out for your friends, neighbors and the elderly during winter weather.