Updated Dec. 11,4:00 PM: Council on Aging Services Impacted Wednesday & Phone Outages
Dec. 11, 4:00 PM: The Council on Aging reports that due to schools being on a two-hour delay for Wednesday, the Council will not be providing meals tomorrow. The two senior centers also will NOT offer group activities in the morning at either location, but will offer already scheduled activities at the Eastern Center after 1PM. No group activities were scheduled at the Western Center for tomorrow. Both senior centers will be available all day for those who want to use the fitness rooms.
Dec. 11, 11:00 AM: Southwest Park has opened, while Northeast Park and Briar Chapel Park will open at 12:30 PM today. Northwest Park will remain closed today due to icy and snow covered areas. The public input session on a draft County Parks & Recreation Master Plan will be held tonight as scheduled. CLICK HERE The Human Relations Task Force also will meet tonight as planned.
Dec. 11, 10:00 AM: So far, county offices and facilities have been able to open as scheduled at 10 AM with a few exceptions. The Council on Aging reports that both senior centers are open, but only only for those wanting to use the fitness rooms, but the parking lot and walkways at the Western Center in SIler City are still a bit treacherous. The Council on Aging is not providing meals or group classes/activities.
PHONE & INTERNET ISSUES: Several county facilities are impacted by a fiber network outage in Pittsboro. The Board of Elections, Department of Social Services, Chatham Community Library (Pittsboro) and the Pittsboro Waste & Recycling Center are without phones and internet. You can still visit these facilities, but understand that some services may not be available. Chatham Community Library cautions that without network access, checkout of materials will be limited to five items and you must have your library card with you.
The Clerk of Court reports that District Court will have a two-hour delay on Wednesday, but other offices will be open on time. Superior Court was not scheduled for this week.
Dec. 10, 12:45 PM: Due to additional snow and sleet that fell today, Chatham County Interim Manager Dan LaMontagne announced that all county offices, except public safety and other essential services, will close at 4 PM today. The Board of Elections Office will close at 3:30 PM.
LaMontagne added that due to the forecasted refreezing overnight, the county will delay opening-essential offices on Tuesday by two hours at 10 AM. The entire county can expect slushy roads to refreeze overnight with temperatures dipping into the mid-20s. This means very dangerous conditions, especially morning rush hour.
Clerk of Court's Office announces that all court sessions are cancelled on Tuesday.
Dec. 10, NOON: Chatham County Water Utilties has closed for the rest of today. Only the Goldston Library was able to open. Chatham County Social Services has a phone outage expected to last all day, so it will be hard to reach them by phone.
Dec. 10, 10:45 AM: Chatham Community Library in Pittsboro has major computer connectivity issues today. They also have a shortage of staff at all libraries. Most other county offices have been able to open, but some have limited staffs and phone problems. Please call ahead if you plan to visit any county facilities today. CLICK HERE for Staff Directory.
Dec. 10, 9:30 AM: As of this morning, all county park facilities, court sessions and schools are closed. The Council on Aging is not able to serve meals today, including home delivery meals, and has closed its western center in Siler City today due to heavy snow. The Health Clinic in Siler City is unable to see patients today due to limited staff and parking lot is getting more snow cover. The following Waste & Recycling Collection Centers will not open today: Asbury, Crutchfield, Hadley, Cole Park and Martha’s Chapel.
While roads were improving, but deputies report that heavy snow is falling and recovering some roadways. Stay off the roads if at all possible. Temperatures will drop tonight into the 20s, so black ice is going to occur wherever roads are not fully dry.
As of 8 AM, Chatham County still had 3,009 power outages. The peak was 7,949 on Sunday at 1 PM.
Dec. 9, 4:45 PM: All Chatham County offices, except public safety functions, will be delayed opening by one hour at 9 AM. However, some offices may have limited staff or services, so best to call ahead of visiting. The status of the waste & recycling collection centers openings will depend on status reports in the morning. Many roads and bridges are still covered with heavy, wet snow. see item below for more info on closures.
Dec. 9, 12:45 PM: Chatham County Schools are closed on Monday, as are all court sessions. The Chatham Council on Aging will not provide meal services Monday either. As reported earlier, all County Collection Centers are closed today.
Emergency Management reports that power outages have gone up and down today. At one point, we had about 5,800 power outages, mostly along and north of US 64, but now back down to 2,900. Road conditions remain poor.
Snowfall totals range from 4 to 8.6 inches, with the highest reports in northeast Chatham near Poythress Rd. & Gilmore Rd.
At this time, we are seeing mostly rain across Chatham County. We may have a mix of sleet and rain from Monday morning into the afternoon.
Dec. 9, 10 AM: All Chatham County waste & recycling centers will not open today due to the icy roads. Reminder that court sessions are closed Monday.
Dec. 9, 7:00 AM: The latest forecast from the National Weather Service - Raleigh shows the transition from snow to sleet and freezing rain later this morning could mean up to 1/4-inch of ice on limbs and powerlines in some parts of the county. A diagonal line from SW corner toward the NE is an area of most concern.
Duke Energy has advised to expect scattered power outages and some could be prolonged. Make sure you take precautions now for that possibility.
All roads are covered in snow and sleet all across Chatham. Please stay off the roads unless an emergency. All roads are maintained by NC Dept of Transportation and rural roads are often the last to be scraped. A coating of ice will make that even more difficult.
The Chatham County Council on Aging will make decisions today concerning meal services for tomorrow. They alerted clients on Friday of this possibility.
Dec. 7, 3:00 PM: Court sessions scheduled for Monday, Dec. 10, are cancelled. No decision yet on Clerk of Court.
Dec. 7, 12:45 AM: The National Weather Service Raleigh Office continues to show Chatham County in the zone with substantial uncertainty, as the image below indicates. Even small movements of the system could make a major difference in how much snow, sleet or freezing rain Chatham County gets. We expect the western side to be more impacted than than the eastern side, but forecasters are not sure how dramatic those differences will be. At this time, we are not expecting dangerous accumulation of ice, but Sunday will have gusty winds, so small amounts could bring down limbs.
Dec. 6, 5:00 PM: According to the National Weather Service Raleigh Office, all of Chatham County should expect to see cold rain starting late Saturday afternoon, with periods of snow or freezing rain developing overnight. Periods of gusty winds will also make it feel much colder and could bring down some weak limbs and trees. The system will be with us well into Monday.
This far out, the forecast models vary as to where and when transitions to snow or freezing rain will occur and how much specific areas will get. The northwestern part of Chatham County is currently expected to be more impacted by frozen precipitation, but the entire county is expected to have at least some accumulation of snow, sleet or freezing rain. The forecasters advise that a couple of miles can make a huge difference in terms of impact.
We will provide additional forecast updates on Friday, which hopefully will provide more details on what to expect in Chatham County.
Besides checking local TV and radio news, a great resource provided by the National Weather Service Raleigh is a Forecast Slide Presentation, updated every few hours at: www.weather.gov/media/rah/briefing/NWSRaleighLatestBriefing.pdf
“Complete your preparations for wintry weather today and tomorrow, before conditions worsen,” advised Steve Newton, director of Chatham County Emergency Management. “Make sure your household has ample food, water, personal items and medications to last a few days. Make sure that heating units are in working condition and you have plenty of heating fuel on hand. Check on vulnerable and isolated friends and family.”
Please remember to take special precautions for pets as well. Water bowls left outside will quickly freeze. If at all possible, bring dogs and cats inside or make sure they have warm shelter from the cold and freezing precipitation. Some breeds are not equipped to handle freezing temperatures.
Residents may recall that Chatham had a major ice and snow event in early January of this year county property taxes were due. The coming deadline, set by state law, is January 7, 2019. Waiting until the last minute can be risky during the winter season. For more information on tax payment options, contact the Tax Collections Office at 919-542-8260 or visit: www.chathamnc.org/index.saspx?page=479
Several webpages offer great tips on preparing for extreme cold and icy weather.
• Spanish-language: https://www.redcross.org/cruz-roja/obtener-ayuda/tipos-de-emergencias/tormentas-de-nieve.html