Most roads were still warm enough to avoid ice during this morning’s commute, but a freezing rain advisory remains in effect through 5 p.m., according to the National Weather Service.
Icy conditions were possible inland, although motorists along the coast were also advised to use caution throughout the day. The advisory includes inland Charleston, Berkeley, Dorchester and Colleton counties.
As of 8 a.m., the freezing rain was north of Harleyville and Summerville, according to the weather service.
“It certainly won’t be a significant event, not like what we saw with last year’s ice storm,” meteorologist John Quagliariello said of the forecast, referring to last year’s brutal ice storm which closed the Arthur Ravenel Jr. Bridge.
Still, Lowcountry schools are shuttered and most government offices are operating on a delay as a precaution.
There is a 90 percent chance of more rain in the afternoon, with a half-inch or so expected. Today’s high should be around 40 degrees and the overnight low around 35 degrees.
Quagliariello said ice was expected only on elevated surfaces such as treetops and power lines. He added that roads, sidewalks and parking lots likely wouldn’t see an accumulation of ice.
“There is some concern about bridges and overpasses, but not the major roadways,” Quagliariello said. “The major bridges, if they’re treated and with the current forecast, should be passable, but may be a little slick.”
He warned that there could be patches of ice on the bridges and overpasses, and encouraged drivers to take their time getting places Tuesday.
Some parents questioned whether the forecast was bad enough to cancel school but others felt it was a smart move.
“It seems like every time they close schools, nothing happens,” said Bob Salisbury of Goose Creek, father of two middle schoolers. “But it’s better to be safe than sorry. I don’t trust the buses. They are old and might not have heat or might slide on ice. It’s not worth it to take a chance.”
West Ashley mom Jessica Conley said she appreciated the early warning that schools would be closed.
“It gives me a chance to line up child care so I’m not scrambling at the last minute,” she said.
Quagliariello said things will clear up by Tuesday night, but another storm system is forecast to moved in Wednesday afternoon.
There’s a 40 percent chance of more rain Wednesday during the day and a 100 percent chance at night. Wednesday’s high should be near 49 and the overnight low around 38.
Dave Munday contributed to this story. Reach Melissa Boughton at 937-5594.