First appreciable snow blankets Chicago - FOX 35 News Orlando

First appreciable snow blankets Chicago

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CHICAGO (FOX 32 News) -

Stuck behind one of 200 plows and salt spreaders on the way to Old Town, FOX 32 News finds the city working against time Sunday evening - the later it gets, the lower the temperature drops and the more likely Sunday's layer of snow will turn to ice.

"I had to go pretty slow on the inside roads as far as the neighborhoods and things like that. Once we got to the interstates and main roads, it was ok. We've been at lunch and looking around now it looks like it's getting a little wet, so I just hope it doesn't freeze over and create some ice for us - that's the real trouble," said Chelsea Rollins, an Old Town resident.

And Rollins is right, but until then she and tourist Joanna Smith like many others are enjoying the picturesque aftermath of the city's first appreciable snowfall this season.

"Being from the South, I don't see snow very often and generally when snow is predicted it never happens to begin with so actually this is kind of a nice December surprise for me," said Smith, a tourist from Nashville.

Sunday's snowfall was also a surprise for Amber Carlson from Phoenix who FOX 32 News found carrying shopping bags and coffee.

"I'm loving it because I'm here to Christmas shop, so it kind of makes it very dreamy for me," said Carlson.

A nightmare could lie ahead for Chicagoans as temperatures are expected to hit single digits and drop below zero degrees, according to the Office of Emergency Management and Communications.

The OEMC is urging everyone to have emergency kits in cars and homes, stock up on necessities and make sure pipes are properly insulated and not exposed to freezing air.

"I'm glad I got to be here for it and then I get to leave before it gets any worse," said Carlson.

Kamehachi Restaurant is prepared - the entrance is salted just in case.

"Whatever we can do to clear the way, depending on how much snow falls, we have to help the customers out so everybody can come in," said Roger Hatanaka, a manager.

Not everyone is concerned about the wintry weather - Joe Larsen was walking through Sunday's snowfall in shorts.

"Yeah, it's not that bad out. It's definitely warmer today than it was yesterday so I figured I'm just going to the gym and back, so it's not too bad today," said Larsen.

Information from OEMC:

Additionally, residents who may be without heat can head to any of the six Community Service Centers operated by the Department of Family and Support Services (DFSS), which are located throughout the city that double as warming centers on weekdays during the winter months when temperatures fall below 32 degrees. Hours for Community Service Centers are 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday. The Garfield Community Service Center, located at 10 South Kedzie, is open on a 24-hour basis to connect residents to emergency shelters.

Those seeking a warm place to go on weekends, holidays, or after hours should call 3-1-1 to be directed to available City facilities. Seniors or individuals with limited mobility may call 3-1-1 to request a ride to any of the centers. And individuals requiring emergency overnight shelter should also call 3-1-1.

For more winter weather preparedness tips, visit Alert Chicago and to receive Chicago emergency and non-emergency notifications, register at Notify Chicago.

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