A late winter storm dumped heavy snow across the Carolinas late Sunday, closing schools, knocking out power to thousands and trapping motorists in their cars after a stretch of Interstate 85 was closed.

Some areas west of Charlotte reported as much as 10 inches, but most saw far less.

Duke Energy this morning said about 180,000 customers were without electricity. That included about 13,000 in Gaston County and about 12,000 in Mecklenburg County.

In the Charlotte region, major roads this morning were slushy but passable. Traffic was light as most school districts, including Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools, were closed or opened on a delayed schedule. Police advised workers who could to stay home today.

Johnson C. Smith University announced that its campus would be closed.

Numerous wrecks on Interstate 85 forced authorities to close a 22-mile stretch of I-85 overnight in Cherokee (S.C.) and Cleveland counties, trapping hundreds of motorists in their cars and trucks, Charlotteobserver.com reports today.

CMS, meanwhile, will have a make-up day on May 25, Memorial Day.

For complete storm coverage and a list of closings, go to Charlotteobserver.com.

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