Freezing rain is falling across much of the Chicago area, creating ice on bridges and ramps. Drivers should reduce speed and keep a safe distance on the road during the Tuesday morning commute.
A Winter Weather Advisory will be in effect until 9 a.m. Tuesday in Lake, McHenry, Cook, DuPage, Kane and DeKalb counties and in southern Wisconsin for dangerous travel conditions. The precipitation is changing from rain to freezing rain across most of the area, which makes it hard to tell the difference between wet pavement and ice. Untreated surfaces will be slick.
Travelers should check the status of their flights before heading to the airport Tuesday morning. As of 8 a.m., more than 365 flights had been canceled at O’Hare and more than 55 flights canceled at Midway, according to the city’s Department of Aviation.
ABC7 Meteorologist Tracy Butler said snow will start falling again between 9 a.m. and 10 a.m. Tuesday and continue through mid-late afternoon. The snow should clear out just in time for the beginning of the afternoon/evening commute.
Butler said the north suburbs will see the most accumulation Tuesday, between 2 and 4 inches of snow. The city, west suburbs and south suburbs are expected to get between 1 and 2 inches of snow. Less than an inch of snow is expected to fall in northwest Indiana.
Chicago’s Department of Streets and Sanitation deployed more than 200 snow plows and salt spreaders Tuesday to treat Lake Shore Drive and other main streets ahead of the morning rush. Officials will monitor weather conditions and make adjustments when necessary.
The Illinois Department of Transportation deployed its full fleet of more than 350 trucks across all state routes Tuesday morning. IDOT spokesperson Gianna Urgo advised drivers to take it slow around intersections, ramps and bridges, building in extra travel time and leave plenty of room on the road for trucks to keep the roads safe.
The snow started coming down in the northern suburbs late Monday night. The light snow, mixed with the quick drop in temperatures, made for slick conditions – fast.
In Gurnee, a car slid off the road and into a ravine on Dilley Road north of Grand Avenue. In Wadsworth, near the Wisconsin state line, another car went into a ditch. In Zion, two cars went off the pavement after a crash on Green Bay Road near Russell Road.
Authorities urged drivers to stay inside Monday night.
“We’d recommend that you stay in unless you have extremely important pending business outside,” said Justin Stried, Zion Fire Department.
The Sun-Times Media Wire contributed to this report.