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Freezing rain could make travel hazardous in the Charlotte region early Wednesday

This story was updated at 7 a.m. Wednesday.

The Charlotte region could get freezing rain overnight Tuesday into Wednesday morning, causing travel issues for areas north and west of Interstate 85, reports the National Weather Service.

The frozen stuff will likely fall before 9 a.m. Wednesday in Charlotte, Huntersville, Matthews and Concord, and could continue until 7 a.m., according to a “special weather statement” at 3:11 p.m. Tuesday from the NWS office in Greer, S.C., and a 4:52 p.m. NWS forecast.

Ice was being reported on bridges in the Lenoir and Hickory areas early Wednesday. And the Hendersonville Fire Department posted a warning on Facebook noting “the roads are extremely icy.”

“As temperatures fall to near or just briefly below freezing around daybreak Wednesday, light rain may briefly change to light freezing rain or freezing drizzle, and which may accumulate briefly on elevated surfaces,” according to the statement.

Temperatures should climb above freezing between 8 and 9 a.m., “changing any freezing rain back over to all rain,” NWS forecasters said in the special statement.

Ice accumulation is largely expected in counties northwest of Mecklenburg County, forecasters said.

“Though less than a tenth of an inch of ice will accumulate, this will be enough to cause some roadways and sidewalks to become slick, creating hazardous travel conditions,” NWS meteorologists said in a forecast discussion earlier Tuesday.

Asheville will likely see freezing rain as early as 10 p.m. tonight, NWS forecasters said.

The low is expected to be 32 degrees in the Charlotte area and 29 degrees around Asheville.

The chance of rain and freezing rain is 40 percent for Charlotte before sunup and 60 percent through much of the day Wednesday, according to the NWS forecast at 4:52 p.m. Tuesday.

The chance of showers Wednesday night is 90 percent, and as much as 2 inches could fall, according to forecasters.

“The heavy rain falling on moist ground could produce isolated flooding in flood prone areas Wednesday night into Thursday,” according to the NWS forecast discussion Tuesday morning.

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