This story was updated at 3:15 a.m. on Friday, Feb. 20, 2020, with more information.
While most of the Tennessee Valley saw rain Thursday and a light dusting of snow at higher elevations, some areas received a more substantial amount. Several school districts, including Hamilton County, called off classes for Friday because of the threat of ice on the roads.
Tennessee's east Polk and east Monroe counties and Cherokee County, N.C., were on an advisory from 4 a.m. to 10 p.m. EST Thursday, according to our news partner WRCB. Georgia's Fannin and Gilmer counties were from 5 a.m. Thursday to 1 a.m. Friday. Some of these locations were expected to see one to four inches of snowfall.
The rain began before sunrise Thursday and gradually changed over to snow in the afternoon in Tennessee. The changeover was a bit slower in North Georgia. Accumulations were mainly on grassy areas, especially in the higher elevations. Temperatures dropped throughout the afternoon and winds are out of the north. Areas that had the best chance for snow included Sequatchie, Bledsoe, Grundy and Rhea counties. Most areas in Georgia saw only rain.
Hamilton County Schools will be closed on Friday due to concerns of ice on roads in the morning, especially in the higher elevations, according to a system news release Thursday evening. The National Weather Service forecast calls for temperatures to remain below freezing until the middle of the day tomorrow. After additional discussions with emergency personnel and the concern of wet roads freezing overnight, it was decided to close schools Friday out of an abundance of caution and the concern for student safety, the release stated.
School-aged child care locations will be open Friday from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. at Barger Academy, Battle Elementary, Daisy Elementary, East Brainerd Elementary, East Ridge Elementary, Middle Valley Elementary, Harrison Elementary and Red Bank Elementary.
Bledsoe, Bradley, Grundy, McMinn, Meigs, Polk, Rhea, Sequatchie and Van Buren county schools, and Athens, Cleveland and Daton city schools in Tennessee will be closed Friday because of weather conditions. Catoosa, Chattooga, Dade, Union and Walker county schools, Chickamauga and Dalton schools in Georgia will be also be closed Friday.
Whitfield County Schools will also be closed Friday, according to a news release. All school-related activities are also canceled.
All campuses of Cleveland State will be on a two hour delay Friday, opening at 10 a.m. because of inclement weather conditions expected overnight.
Due to the worsening weather, all Public Health Departments and public health services in Cherokee, Fannin, Gilmer, Murray, Pickens and Whitfield Counties closed early Thursday and will remain closed through Friday, according to a news release.
The North Georgia Health District office in Dalton will delay opening until 10 a.m. Friday, the release states.
In early February, most area counties were under a winter weather advisory with snow accumulating up to five inches. Snow accumulation for Thursday was not as heavy.