RALEIGH The Tarheel State is on high alert Thursday as forecasters predict up to 8 inches of snow in parts of North Carolina. According to the National Weather Service, a Winter Storm Watch is in effect from Charlotte through the Triad and Triangle, with the most projected snowfall in the northeastern part of the state. The far western part of the state is less likely to see accumulations. The watch is in effect from noon Thursday through 10 p.m. on Saturday night. Approximately 3 to 5 inches of snow is expected through the central part of the state, up to 4 inches in the Sandhills and southern coastal plain. The storm will roll through overnight Friday, while Saturday will be below freezing. “An arctic air mass will begin to spread into central North Carolina on Friday,” the National Weather Service reported. “A mixture of snow and sleet will occur overnight Friday and then transition to mostly snow on Saturday.”At hardware stores and grocery stores across the state homeowners are snapping up sleds and ice melting chemicals. The Seaboard ACE hardware in downtown Raleigh reports that by noon Thursday they had already sold 600 bags of ice melting pellets, 60 sleds and 72 shovels. The run on items led the store to call an emergency supply truck from the ACE warehouse to restock.”We sold out of shovels by 11 a.m. … We should be restocked by 2 p.m. [Friday],” said Seaboard ACE hardware’s store manager Mary Jennette. “We had already done about 70 percent of a normal day’s business, in terms of traffic count, by 11 a.m. this morning.”In Robeson County residents are on alert for more flooding from the impending storm and this week’s rain. The National Weather Service issued a flood warning active through Monday, reporting that the river was already above flood stage on Thursday morning. “Flood waters will affect yards in the Pines area, Cox Pond area, and along River Road,” the warning read. “Additional residential property will be affected between the Pepsi plant and the river on the east side of Lumberton.” The storm comes after a separate system pummeled western states earlier this week.Snowstorms battered Oregon, which was in the grips of a moderate drought last year, prompting the closure of highways and schools. In Medford, Ore., a winter storm dumped more than 8 inches of snow in a single day, the most the city has recorded over a 24-hour period in nearly a century, KTVL News 10 reported. The Oregon State Police reported that its field office, located about 50 miles southeast of Portland, was buried under at least 5 feet of snow. An 8-year-old girl was killed in the coastal area of Otis, Ore., when a storm bringing high winds and snow caused a tree to crash onto her home earlier in the week, CBS reported. In Boise, the capital city in the northwestern state of Idaho, 6.5 inches of snow fell on Wednesday, the most ever recorded on that date, the Weather Service said. Snow depth in the area was 15 inches, another record, it said.
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