LIVE: Blizzard warning, ‘travel is not recommended’ – Champaign/Urbana News-Gazette

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3:55 p.m.

Sen. Dick Durbin just issued a statement urging all residents “to be safe and remain cautious as severe weather sweeps through central and eastern Illinois.”

3:35 p.m.

The state police have closed Illinois 47 in Champaign County from Route 136 (near Fisher) to  Mahomet.

Several semis and cars are stranded north of Mahomet on Illinois 47 anc cannot be moved at this time.

3:30 p.m.

County officials report travel is impossible in some rural locations due to the wind and snow.

County highway department  crews will be available to accompany emergency vehicles if necessary.

If you find yourself stuck in a rural area, you should remain within your vehicle. Run the engine for about 10 minutes every hour to stay warm. Make sure the exhaust pipe of your vehicle is clear of snow.

3:15 p.m.

Rick Atterberry of the Champaign County Emergency Management Agency said travel is not advised on county highways this afternoon and evening.

He said that vehicles that are stuck in the snow are impeding snow removal operations in the county, resulting in several snow plows getting stuck.

He advises motorists not to try to drive on county roads outside the cities this afternoon and evening.

Atterbery said Champaign County Highway Department plows will be pulled from the county highways at 6 p.m. until conditions improve.


From state police, 3:05 p.m

I-72 westbound at milepost 179.5 is open. I-57 southbound at milepost 192 is open.

There are multiple crashes on I-72 westbound between Champaign and Piatt counties with lane blockages but traffic can get by on the right shoulder. There is a large amount of ice and snow on I-72 westbound.

Several drivers have been taken to area hospitals.

From Illinois State Police:

Troopers are on the scene of crashes on I-72 which is covered in ice and snow.  Travel speeds are at 15-20 MPH or less.  Use caution when approaching stopped emergency vehicles.  Don’t crowd snow plows.  The interstate in Macon County and Piatt County is extremely dangerous.

Power lines are down across all lanes of I-57 south of MP 184 in Coles County.  This is confirmed and traffic is being diverted southbound at MP 184 and northbound and MP 177 (Neoga).  Avoid this area


MANSFIELD – Illinois State Police report a tractor truck hauling a semi-trailer has slid into the median on Interstate 74 eastbound.

The trailer is blocking the left lane of travel. The accident was reported by police about 7:20 a.m.

Shortly after 8 a.m., troopers reported that there are also several crashes on I-72 in both Piatt and Macon counties, I-57 and I-74. Travel speeds are at 15 to 20 mph or less. 

East-west roads seem to be worse, police say, and conditions are deteriorating quickly. Travel is not recommended due to white-out conditions, heavy snow and high winds. 

Police are begging those motorists who must be out to slow down and to get out of the way for snow plows and emergency vehicles.

From the National Weather Service

End to trend?

After a whopper of a winter in 2013-14 and a less-threatening 2014-15, most area school districts went into today not having taken a single snow, or Act of God, day this school year.

“That may change quickly,” Rantoul Superintendent Scott Amerio said Tuesday.


*-Combined into the new Salt Fork district this year.

LIVE: Blizzard warning, ‘travel is not recommended’ – Champaign/Urbana News-Gazette