Duke Officials Monitoring Wintry Mix Weather System

A period of snow or a rain-snow mix is possible across the Piedmont Thursday night through Friday night

The weather system on January 8, 2021. Photo courtesy of NOAA GOES Image Viewer.

[Update: Friday, Jan. 8, 2021, 11:12 a.m.]

The National Weather Service has issued a winter weather advisory for the Triangle area, where wet snow is likely through 1 a.m. Saturday.

With the potential for hazardous road conditions as a result, beginning at 5 p.m. Friday, January 8, to 7 a.m. Monday, Jan. 11, Duke community members with an active annual parking permit may use their permit or Duke ID to access parking in:

  • Parking Garage 1 (Trent Drive entrances and exits only)
  • Parking Garage 2 (all entrances and exits)
  • Parking Garage 3 (all entrances and exits)
  • Research Drive Garage (Research Drive entrances and exits only)
  • Hock Garage (all entrances and exits)

While roof levels of garages are closed for safety reasons, the space in interior garage levels provide ample, covered parking. Garage parking is recommended when roads and surface lots receive any accumulation of snow or ice.

Also, Parking Garage 3 entry and exit gates will be raised starting at 2 p.m. Friday,  Jan,. 8,  as an additional parking resource for community members.

At this time, the current transit schedule will remain in place, however, passengers should expect delays in the event of poor road conditions. Monitor routes in real-time on TransLoc.

[Update: Thursday, Jan. 7, 2021,11:20 p.m.]

The National Weather Service has issued a Winter Weather Advisory for central North Carolina, including Durham and Wake counties. The latest forecasts indicate precipitation in the Triangle will likely start as rain before changing over to a wintry mix or snow later on Friday.
At this time Duke does not expect to activate the Severe Weather and Emergency Conditions policy. COVID-19 testing sites, including gateway testing for graduate students in Penn Pavilion, surveillance testing, sites on campus, and Duke Health test sites will operate on a normal schedule. Buses will also operate on a normal schedule, but passengers should monitor Duke TransLoc in the event delays due to poor road conditions.
The area north of I-85 is likely to see more snow, while areas south of I-85 will probably see more rain until the late afternoon or evening as temperatures begin to drop. Accumulations may vary from less than an inch to 2 inches, depending on location. Wet and slushy areas may also refreeze overnight and create hazardous icy conditions Saturday morning.
Crews will be on-site assessing conditions and clearing or treating any problem areas on campus. The top level of parking garages on campus will be closed as a precaution, and the gates to Parking Garage III will be open after 3 p.m. Friday to allow staff allow to park closer to the medical center.
Individual commuting to or from campus should allow extra time for travel based on weather conditions and use extra caution while walking on sidewalks and elevated surfaces.
Additional updates will be posted on Duke Today as conditions warrant or operations change.
[Update: Wednesday, Jan. 6, 2021, 6 p.m.]
According to the National Weather Service, the timing of the system projected to bring possible snow to central North Carolina has moved back slightly with less accumulation expected.

The latest forecasts suggests that precipitation may begin as rain early Friday morning with accumulations of less than an inch for the Triangle area.

The top level of parking garages will be closed at the end of the day on Thursday, Jan. 7, in case of potential icing. If icing or accumulation is expected, the gates of parking garages will be opened to allow essential service staff to park inside parking garages.

At this time, the current transit schedule will remain in place, however, passengers should expect delays in the event of poor road conditions.

Crews are also scheduled to treat or clear entrances to campus buildings, including COVID-19 test sites, as needed.

Additional updates will be posted here as information becomes available.

[Original Post]
Duke officials are closely monitoring weather forecasts that currently indicate the possibility of snow Thursday through Friday for central North Carolina.
Up to an inch of heavy wet, slushy snow is possible Thursday night through Friday night, mainly along and north of the I-85 corridor. Much of the snow will fall during the day Thursday with accumulations more dependent on intensity (that is, how hard and fast the snow is falling).
Please review the priority clearing map to determine preferred paths of travel during severe weather. Members of the Duke community should use extreme caution when traveling to and around campus in case there are icy spots.
If Duke activates the Severe Weather and Emergency Conditions policy, officials will send a notification through the DukeALERT system, including text message, email, the DukeALERT website and the web alert bar. A message also will be recorded on the severe weather/emergency conditions telephone line at 684-INFO (4636). Faculty and staff who are not already registered should sign up for text message updates from the DukeALERT system.
Given the possibility of severe weather, please ralso eview Duke's severe weather and emergency conditions policy and share information with your staff regarding what they should do if the policy is activated.
During times of severe weather, some staff positions require on-site presence to continue operations. All jobs should be assigned a service category by the manager to ensure continuous operations of patient care, student support and research functions. Managers should ensure staff members are aware of the service category for their position and how they will be notified if the severe weather policy is activated. The three categories are:
  • Essential Service: during severe weather/emergency conditions, essential service staff report or remain at work.
  • Reserve Service: during severe weather/emergency conditions, reserve service staff are assigned a status at the time of severe weather/emergency condition.
  • Delayed Service: during severe weather/emergency conditions, delayed service staff do not report to work or remain at work.
More information about the policy, including a map of priorities for clearing roads, lots and sidewalks, checklists and answers to frequently asked questions, is available at the Duke Emergency Management website.
Follow Working@Duke on Twittter for real-time updates as conditions warrant.