By JOY CRIST
Roads throughout the Outer Banks remain covered with snow and ice and with very little warming, making travel difficult throughout the islands. All Dare and Hyde County offices are closed on Friday, January 5.
Temperatures are forecasted to remain in the 20s and low 30s until Monday, when they will jump up to the 50s for the majority of next week. A wind chill advisory is in effect for the islands until 10 a.m., as the wind chill remains in the single digits as of Friday morning. Northwest winds in the 10-20 mph range are forecast to continue into Sunday, but will taper off along with the increasing warmer air temperatures.
The frigid temperatures combined with standing frozen water and snow will make driving conditions extremely dangerous for an extended period of time.
The Dare County Sheriff’s Office reports that roads are covered with ice, making driving conditions dangerous. The Sheriff’s Office advises that motorists use extra caution when traveling today, give extra distance between cars, and allow for extra time to get to their destination. They also advise that the public stays off the roads altogether, if at all possible.
If you must be out on the roads, Dare County Emergency Management advises that you have basic items on hand: scraper, jumper cables, tow chain, blankets, flashlights, and first aid kit. Remember to take it slow and if you see NCDOT crews at work, give them plenty of room.
The North Carolina Ferry System reports that they are beginning the process of reopening routes where it is safe to do so. However, all Ocracoke and Hatteras Island routes were still offline as of Friday morning. For more information on ferry operations, visit https://www.facebook.com/NCFerries/.
The frigid conditions and blustery winds may lead to sporadic power outages. To report an outage, contact the power company directly.
To stay up to date with latest watches, warnings and advisories from the National Weather Service, visit http://www.weather.gov/mhx/.
For updated road conditions, visit www.drivenc.gov.
For updated closure/cancellation information from Dare County and links to important contact information, visit www.darenc.com/winterweather.