After seeing snow flurries last weekend, Cullman could receive more frozen precipitation today, meteorologists said.

Jason Elliott, a forecaster with the National Weather Service office in Huntsville, said Friday that sleet or frozen rain was likely in the early morning hours today. As of Friday afternoon, a winter storm watch was in effect for Cullman through Saturday evening.

The National Weather Service said up to three inches of sleet or several tenths of an inch of ice could accumulate on the ground Saturday.

Weather formations bringing sub-zero temperatures to the area could impact the Tennessee Valley area as well, he said.

"We are expecting to get a piece of that cold air and some precipitation," Elliot said. "It's going to be primarily sleet, maybe some frozen rain."

Elliot predicted temperatures in the high 20s today.

"Temperatures all day (Saturday) are going to be falling," he said.

City and county officials overseeing roads said plans were in place if unsafe conditions develop on the streets.

"We're prepared," said Rick Henry, superintendent of the city of Cullman's street department. "We've got three sanders (dump trucks that spread sand to provide traction on icy roads), our trucks are loaded down, ready to go, fueled up."

Henry said staffers were on call to come in "if there's even the slightest hint that anything could happen."

Calcium chloride, a de-icing chemical, is on hand to clear entrances to public buildings, he said.

County Engineer Phillip Widner said the County Road Department was preparing for the worst, loading up sand trucks in preparation to dust icy roads.

"We're trying to stay ready for any winter weather," he said. "We've got several tons of sand on hand."

Widner said residents could report and slick roads to the Sheriff's Office, which would pass the information on to the road crews.

County Safety Director and Good Hope Mayor Gordon Dunagan offered assuring words, saying, "We're as prepared as we can be. We'll be ready for the snow and ice."

Henry advised drivers not to stay off the streets if roads appear dangerous.

"I would encourage people, if it does happen, if we have a sleet or ice event, to stay off the roads," he said. "We don't want our presence to encourage people, to give them a false sense of security."

If travel is necessary, the American Red Cross offers these tips:

• Inform someone of travel route, destination and arrival time.

• Keep gas tanks near full to avoid ice in the tank and fuel lines.

If you get stuck:

• Stay with your car.

• Tie a brightly colored cloth to the antenna.

• Use the car's heater for about 10 minutes every hour.

• Keep exhaust pipe clear

• Leave overhead light on when engine running

• Keep moving to keep blood circulating.

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