Drivers warned of slick roads as snow blankets Chicago area - FOX 35 News Orlando

PHOTOS: Drivers warned of slick roads as snow blankets Chicago area

Posted: Updated:
CHICAGO (FOX 32 News) -

Snow continued to blanket the Chicago region Friday morning, making driving conditions more hazardous for commuters.

The city's full fleet of 284 snow plows cleared and salted streets, first focusing on main streets and then shifting to residential streets, according to a statement from the city's Department of Streets and Sanitation.

The National Weather Service warned that wind gusts of up to 30 miles-per-hour could "result in wind whipped snow" and brief whiteout conditions causing reduce visibility.

The wet snow could also make shoveling sidewalks and driveways harder, the weather service said.

The weather service issued a winter weather advisory that went into effect for the Chicago area at 9 p.m. Thursday and lasts until 6 p.m. Friday. As much as an inch of accumulation per hour is possible early Friday, with 3 to 5 total inches expected.

Meteorologist Gino Izzi said between 2 and 5 inches of accumulation are expected in the Chicago area, but only 2 or 3 inches are likely in the city.

The storm might seem insignificant for February in Chicago, but it's expected to be the most snow we've seen this winter so far.

"Our snowblower hasn't even gotten out this winter," Annette Cantu of Plainfield said Thursday night. "I got three good shovelers right here, they'll help mom."

By Friday morning, the snow is expected to mix with light freezing drizzle, according to the weather service, but the significant precipitation should be gone by the morning rush.

The precipitation is expected to be light snow and light rain Friday afternoon, with no additional accumulation likely. Temperatures are expected to reach 36 degrees Friday.

"It's Chicago what are you going to do? 50 one day and then 20 and snow the next, its ok," said Cantu.

Periods of "heavy snow," sleet or rain are expected to limit visibility, make roads slippery and travel difficult through 6 p.m. Friday, the weather service said.

But just in case, The Illinois Department of Transportation told FOX 32's Tisha Lewis that its team watched the weather closely and had more than 360 salt and plow truck fleet prepared to hit the roadways at a moment's notice.

The Illinois Tollway also prepared to mobilize its full fleet of 182 snowplows for this snow event. Crews will work the roads until the snow ceases.

The Illinois Tollway's Snow Operations Center remained open Thursday night to manage the system-wide response. To help with snow removal, the Tollway has canceled all temporary lane closures until 10 p.m. Friday.

IDOT and the Tollway asked that motorists drive late Thursday only if necessary and give road crews room to work when they are on the roads.

No snow was expected this weekend, and temperatures Saturday and Sunday are forecast in the low to mid-30s.

As for Chicago's winter so far this year, it's no secret that we've had very little snow. In fact, only 10.7 inches of snow has fallen at O'Hare so far. The biggest calendar snowfall of 2.4 inches fell on Feb. 4.

By the third week of February, Chicago would normally already racked up close to 27 inches of snow.

Last winter, Chicago received 19.8" of snow, which is roughly 50% of our normal snowfall.

The last time Chicago had back-to-back winters with below normal snowfall was 2005-2006 (18.4 inches) and 2006-2007 (29.6 inches).

The Sun-Times Media Wire contributed to this report.

Share Your Weather Photos & Video

Submit Your Weather Photos

Share Your Photos & Video

ADVERTISEMENT
Powered by WorldNow

35 Skyline Drive
Lake Mary, FL 32746

Phone: (407) 644-3535
News Tips: (866) 55-FOX35

Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | New Terms of Service What's new | Ad Choices