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Snow expected by 3 a.m. Sunday in Charlotte

Olive Sorzano, 3, enjoys the snow at Romare Bearden Park in uptown Charlotte on Jan. 7 after a winter storm with a split personality dumped several inches of snow across parts of North Carolina.
Olive Sorzano, 3, enjoys the snow at Romare Bearden Park in uptown Charlotte on Jan. 7 after a winter storm with a split personality dumped several inches of snow across parts of North Carolina. dhinshaw@charlotteobserver.com

Charlotte can expect an inch of snow from a wintry system that will start as rain late Saturday before turning into snowfall from about 3 to 8 a.m. Sunday, a National Weather Service meteorologist said Saturday afternoon.

City crews are expected to begin salting streets Saturday night, although NWS meteorologist Scott Krentz said total snowfall is expected to be light. Crews will focus on bridges, culverts and hospital entrances.

Charlotte’s forecasted snow is part of a winter weather system striking the East Coast this weekend that could bring up to a foot of snow to Boone in the North Carolina mountains by late Monday. In Charlotte, subfreezing morning temperatures are expected through at least Friday.

In Charlotte, report icy roads to CharMeck 311 or 704-336-3200. Call 911 to report emergencies and wrecks.

At 3:15 p.m. Saturday, the weather service extended a winter weather advisory to Mecklenburg County and counties in upstate South Carolina. The advisory was still in effect for counties west, north and northeast of Mecklenburg to 11 a.m. Sunday, meaning snow could make driving difficult.

Up to 3 inches of snow could fall in Hickory through Sunday morning, under 2 inches in Gastonia, Lincolnton and Statesville, less than an inch in Concord and about an inch in Rock Hill.

Early Sunday could hit a low of 33 while morning temperatures could drop to 26 by early Thursday, according to the latest forecast from the NWS office in Greer, S.C..

“It’s what we call a cold air outbreak,” Krentz said.

On Monday, Charlotte has a slight chance of snow and sleet before 9 a.m. and a slight chance of sleet between 9 and 10 a.m. Rain is likely after 10 a.m., according to the weather service. Little or no snow and sleet accumulation is expected Monday.

American Airlines passengers traveling to, through and from Charlotte Douglas and other Carolinas airports this weekend may be able to change their trip with no change fee due to the wintry weather.

Delta is offering full refunds to travelers who wish to cancel their trips due to flight cancellations or 90-minute or more delays to any of 30 cities in the Northeast and Canada.

LaVendrick Smith: 704-358-5101; @LaVendrickS

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