Snow is in forecast

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, December 4, 2002

Despite big holiday sales, Virginia Farmner had just two bags of rock salt and a can of de-icer in her cart at Wal-Mart.

&uot;Just in case,&uot; said the North Carolina resident, who stopped at the superstore Tuesday on her way to spend a couple of days in Smithfield.

&uot;I probably won’t even have to use it. But if I didn’t have, you can be sure I would need it.&uot;

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Based on the National Weather Service projections at 4 p.m. Tuesday, the Suffolk area may receive some snow flurries from the winter storm moving across Virginia late Wednesday and early Thursday, said Capt. Jim Judkins, the city’s coordinator of emergency services. But no snow accumulation is expected.

For tonight, the weather service is calling for rain, possibly mixed with snow and sleet with temperatures in the lower 30s.

On Thursday, early morning rain may give way to snow showers in the afternoon.

Right now, the more dangerous freezing rain appears to be heading for central Virginia, including areas as far east as parts of Southampton County, Judkins said. The western part of the state is expected to receive as much as eight inches of snow.

But things can still change before Wednesday night, he said.

&uot;The barometer is still rising and systems still forming in the Gulf now,&uot; Judkins said. &uot;It (the weather Suffolk receives) all depends upon how fast things move over the next 24 hours.&uot;

He advised local residents to stay near a television or radio for up-to-date weather information on Wednesday.

Meanwhile, many local residents are following Farmner’s lead to not let this storm catch them off guard.

Brooke Pruden, owner of Pruden Hardware, said Tuesday that his winter-weather products were beginning to move off the shelves.

&uot;A lot of people are talking about show,&uot; Pruden said. &uot;One man came in yesterday and bought two snow shovels.

&uot;And a couple of guys from VDOT (the Virginia Department of Transportation) are here right this minute buying pipe fittings for their snow plows.&uot;