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Chicago Weather: Winter Storm Live Updates

CHICAGO (CBS) -- Suburban Chicago is getting hit hard by one of the biggest November snowstorms on record.  Thick, wet snow fell heavily overnight, with accumulations in some locations nearing a foot.

Megan Glaros reports that the snow should end by 9 or 10 a.m.. However, snow will linger until midday in Northwest Indiana, although that area is seeing lower accumulations than towns to the north and west of Chicago.

Check out the current conditions.
Check out latest school closings.

The latest updates:

Monday, November 26

11:45 a.m. City Plowing Side Streets

After spending nearly 18 hours focused on plowing and salting the city's main streets and Lake Shore Drive, the Chicago Department of Streets and Sanitation has deployed its snow plows to the city's side streets.

"Although the snow has stopped, motorists are urged to take precaution when traveling during inclement weather and drive according to conditions," the city stated in a news release.

9:40 a.m. Hundreds Of Flights Canceled

The timing of the storm was especially bad for holiday travelers, with hundreds of flights canceled at O'Hare and Midway on Sunday. Hundreds more are being canceled on Monday.

At O'Hare International Airport, at least 791 flights have been canceled as of 9:40 a.m., with delays averaging 58 minutes.

At Midway International Airport, at least 69 flights have been canceled as of 9:40 a.m., with delays averaging less than 15 minutes.

8:55 a.m. Updated Power Outages

ComEd said a total of 339,000 homes and businesses lost power during the storm, starting around 7 p.m. Sunday. Crews have restored power to 152,000 customers, and another 177,000 remained without power as of 8:30 a.m. Monday.

8:45 a.m. Downed Power Line Blocks Metra Trains

Metra reported extensive delays on Union Pacific-North Line trains, due to a downed tree and power line near Lake Forest. Outbound trains were stopping near Highland Park, waiting for inbound trains to proceed. Inbound trains were reporting delays of up to an hour. Inbound train #318,

7:30 a.m. Nearly 700 Flights Canceled

Ground stop in effect at O'Hare International Airport, due to the winter storm, with some arriving flights delayed more than 3 hours.

A total of 613 flights had been canceled at O'Hare on Monday, with delays averaging 39 minutes.

At Midway International Airport, a total of 69 flights had been canceled, with delays averaging less than 15 minutes.

6:55 a.m. More Snow Totals

O'Hare Airport, 7.4 inches

Crystal Lake, 7.6 inches

Bull Valley, (McHenry County) , 13.1 inches

6:35 a.m. 169,000 Without Power

ComEd spokesman Tom Dominguez said a total of 304,000 homes and businesses lost power since the winter storm started around 7 p.m. Sunday. As of 6:35 a.m., approximately 169,000 were still without power.

The hardest hit areas were west of O'Hare Airport -- such as Arlington Heights, Mount Prospect, and Palatine -- and further west along Interstate 39.

6:20 a.m.  Storm Cracks Top Five For November

This latest snow/blizzard has become one of the heaviest November storms in Chicago history.

As of 6 a.m., 7.4 inches was recorded at O'Hare, making this storm the fifth biggest in November. Snow was still falling, so that total could rise. O'Hare is the official site for record-keeping.

And for the first time all night, snow is just starting to coat the streets in the Loop.

The bigger issue downtown: huge Lake Michigan waves crashing the shore line. There is a Lake Shore Flood Warning in effect.

6:15 a.m. Evanston Power Outage

The Evanston Police Department has lost power in the storm, but its 911 and non-emergency lines are still working.

6:05 a.m.  Airport Cancellations

Nearly 500 flights have been canceled at O'Hare and Midway airports.

A total of 405 flights have been canceled at O'Hare, with delays of about 30 minutes.

At Midway, 68 flights have been canceled. Delays here are less than 15 minutes.

6 a.m.  Blizzard Warnings Over 

As expected, the Blizzard Warnings have expired. A Winter Storm Warning is still in effect for much of the Chicago area until 9 a.m.  A Winter Weather Advisory is in effect in Northwest Indiana.

5:25 a.m.  A Few More Snow Totals

In Lindenhurst, 9 inches

In Downers Grove, 4.1 inches

Both were reported around 4:30 a.m..

(Scroll down for more)

5:10 a.m.  Hard Hit In McHenry County

McHenry County was one of the heaviest hit areas, with some towns there seeing 8 to 10 inches of snow overnight.

Sgt. Andrew Thomas, with the McHenry County Sheriff's Department, said the snow was easing as of 5 a.m.

The biggest issue now was dealing with blowing and drifting snow. He said there were no major accidents, just some spin-outs overnight. He urged people to avoid the roads this morning while crews work to clear the snow.

4:50 a.m. No Power At Lake Forest Oasis

The Lake Forest Oasis, usually a good spot to ride out the storm or get a cup coffee and a bite to eat, is closed right now.

There is no power.

Ed Curran reports the entire area is in the dark, part of widespread power outages affecting about 140,000 customers.

That area has seen heavy, wet snow for much of the past 12 hours.

The tollway north of Lake Forest is totally covered in snow.

4:34 a.m.  Video: Jack-knifed semi on Interstate 294

CBS 2's Ed Curran was driving in the Mobile Weather Lab when he came upon a jack-knifed semi on Interstate 294 near Half Day Road.

Over in the western suburbs, Mike Puccinelli reports from Elmhurst that winds are dying down a bit, but it is still snowing. Several plows were seen clearing the areas near Spring Road and Eggleston Avenue.

4:20 a.m.  Strong Winds, Heavy Snow

Shortly after leaving downtown, where it was mostly raining, CBS 2's Ed Curran found steadily falling snow on the North Side.  As Mobile Weather Lab approached Deerfield on Interstate 294, the tollway was covered with snow and driving was slippery.

In Hoffman Estates, Vi Nguyen reports the bigger issue is high winds. Although snow continues to fall there.

Some preliminary snow totals:

Carpentersville, 7 inches

McHenry/Sunnyside 9 inches

DeKalb, 9 inches

Pecatonica/Winnebago County 13.5 inches


3:45 a.m. 147,000 Without Power

ComEd is reporting that 147,000 customers are currently without power due to the winter storm. A total of 265,000 had lost power since 7 p.m., Sunday but about 120,000 of those have been restored.

The most affected areas are customers north and west of the city.

3:35 a.m. Strong Winds

Here are some of the strongest wind gusts reported overnight.

Location                     Speed     Time/Date       Provider             
Chicago Crib                 55 MPH    0210 AM 11/26   MARITIME             
2 N Shorewood                54 MPH    0514 PM 11/25   CWOP                 
Waukegan Harbor              53 MPH    0140 AM 11/26   NWS-GLOS             
Chicago OHare                52 MPH    0228 AM 11/26   ASOS                 
1 N Papineau                 52 MPH    0515 PM 11/25   MESOWEST             
Wheeling - Chi Exec Airport  51 MPH    0124 AM 11/26   ASOS                 
Calumet Harbor               49 MPH    0154 AM 11/26   NWLON                
Lakeview                     49 MPH    0242 AM 11/26   CWOP                 
West Chicago - DuPage Arpt   49 MPH    0137 AM 11/26   ASOS                 
1 NNW Munster                49 MPH    1019 PM 11/25   CWOP

3:25 a.m Blizzard Warning Lifted For Cook, DuPage Counties

The blizzard warning for Chicago, Cook County, Will County and DuPage County has been lifted, CBS 2's Robb Ellis reports. A Winter Storm Warning remains in effect for those locations.

Current radar:

ADI_Radar_Full (8)


Blizzard warnings are still in effect for other counties in the area.

3:02 a.m. Snow Is Absent In Loop

In the heart of Chicago's downtown, there is literally no snow on the ground.

All night, there has been a heavy mix of rain and snow, and the roads are saturated with water.

It's a very different story in the suburbs, where several inches of snow have already fallen.

Visibility in some locations overnight was near zero. Expressway signs on the Eisenhower Expressway were unreadable in spots because they were covered in thick snow.

Why is that?

Well, Lake Michigan.

The relatively warmer lake water has reduced the chances of accumulation downtown.

However, the high winds are creating huge waves and causing flooding along the coastline.

3 a.m. Hundreds Of Flights Canceled

Chicago's airports have already canceled more than 300 flights on Monday due to a powerful winter storm that hit the area on Sunday.

As of 2:43 a.m., 268 flights had been canceled at O'Hare. Delays were nearly two hours.

At Midway, 42 flights had been canceled.

That follows major cancellations yesterday.

2:40 a.m. Bishop Ford To Reopen

ComEd crews were removing power line from the roadway and the Chicago Fire Department expects the road to open shortly.

2:30 a.m. Snow Falling Heavily In Schaumburg

Latest Update On Storm From Robb Ellis

2:20 a.m.  Lake Shore Drive Flooding

Huge waves along Lake Michigan is causing flooding along the bike path near Navy Pier. There are several feet of water on the path.

1:50 a.m. Bishop Ford Shut Down 

All lanes of the Bishop Ford are shut down near 119th Street due to a fallen live power cable on the road, the Chicago Fire Department reports.

The Fire Department expects the road to be shut down for quite some time.



1:40 a.m. The Snowy Scene In Roselle

A traffic camera overlooking Interstate 90 near Roselle shows the road is completely snow covered.

1:25 a.m. Motorists Stranded In Cars

Illinois State police are reporting people are stranded in their cars west of LaSalle County, on U.S. 6, between Interstate 180 and the town of Princeton.

There are snow drifts of up to four feet and rescues are being conducted by snowmobile.

12:50 a.m.  Record Snow Total For Rockford 

The storm that dumped nearly a foot of snow in Rockford on Sunday smashed the one-day record for the month.

The total of 11.7 inches in Rockford was more than three times the previous November 25th record of 3.3 inches set in 1977. It also exceeds the monthly record of 9.5 inches set in 1951.

Before Sunday's event, here are the five biggest snows in Rockford:

November 6-7, 1951, 9.5 inches

November 20-21, 2015, 8.8 inches

November 27, 1995, 6.6 inches

November 17-18, 1926, 6 inches

November 30, 2004 5.2 inches.

This is also now the snowiest November on record for the city, with  more than 15 inches.

12:20 a.m. Airport Snow Totals

As of midnight, here are snow totals at three airports

O'Hare 3.3 inches

Rockford Airport 11.7 inches

Midway Airport 1.4 inches

To become one of the top five November storms, O'Hare needs to see more than six inches of snow.

12:09 a.m. -- Hazardous Conditions In McHenry County

The snow is especially heavy in McHenry County, the town of McHenry reported nearly eight inches of snow as of 10 p.m. Sunday. Bull Valley reported nearly a foot. McHenry County Sheriff's Police urged people to avoid the roads.

Sunday, November 25

11:30 p.m. What To Expect Overnight

The snow will continue to intensify across the Chicago area. Here is what to expect over the next four hours.

Midnight to 4 a.m.

Heavy snow continues
Visibility near zero
Wind Gusts 35 to 45 mph
Blowing snow
Snow rates 2"+ per hour

NW Indiana changes to snow

11:10 p.m. Snow Piles Up In Suburbs

As of 11 p.m. in the city, snow was barely sticking to the ground.

The suburbs, however, were hit hard with heavy wet snow, combined with high winds.

10:43 p.m. Crashes In Lake County, IL

Lake County officials say sheriff's deputies have responded to about 40 crashes so far in Lake County. Several cars spun into ditches. Snowfall in some areas was approaching 10 inches.

10:15 p.m. Snow Totals

Here are some impressive snow total reports from areas to the west and northwest of Chicago:

Oregon in Ogle County, 11.2 inches
Pecatonica, Winnebago County 8.5 inches
Bull Valley, McHenry County, 11.8 inches
Rockford, Winnebago County 11.8 inches

9:50 p.m. Snow Falling Sideways

In Kane County, high winds caused snow to fall sideways. Visibility was poor throughout the night.

9:31 p.m. Woodstock Snow Totals

Mary Kay Kleist is looking at snow totals, and reports that 10.6 inches has already fallen in Woodstock. More snow totals:

9:30 p.m. Worst Snowstorms Ever In November

If the forecast holds up, this latest snow/blizzard could become one of the heaviest November storms in Chicago history.

This biggest ever fell on this date, 123 years ago!

Right now, the forecast calls for 6 to 8 inches of snow near O'Hare, where current official records are kept.

Here are the five biggest, two day snowfalls in November, according to the National Weather Service.

November 25-26, 1895: 12.0 inches
November 20-21 2015, 11.2 inches
November 6-7 1951, 9.3 inches
November 25-26 1975, 8.9 inches
November 26-27 1940, 6.4 inches
November 25-26, 2018 ????

9:17 p.m. Thousands Affected By Power Outages

ComEd is reporting more than 6,400 customers in Cook County and 2,400 in DuPage County have been affected by outages so far with the most severe weather yet to come for these areas.

9:10 p.m. Roads Become Treacherous

Travel turned tricky and dangerous this afternoon in Rockford. Drivers caught in the storm on Interstate 39 got stuck in ditches. A semi jack knifed on Interstate 90 near Cherry Valley. There were several inches of snow on the ground before sunset.

In Fox Lake, an SUV ended up off the road. Street crews struggled to keep up with the falling snow.

9 p.m. Tough Driving In Northern Suburbs, And Fears About Morning Commute

Parish Ashford can handle the snow tonight. It's tomorrow that's the real concern, CBS 2's Charlie DeMar reports. Ashford has to go to work at 4 a.m. "If the roads aren't clear, it's going to be rough."

Allen Hutchinson was on his way to Milwaukee, just "trying to get the heck home."

For snow plow driver Greg Meehan the snow, "it's money, so it keeps me busy. The fun part is trying to keep up when we get heavy snow like this."

8:50 p.m. Rain Turning To Snow Downtown

The heavy rain that had been falling for several hours in the Loop started to turn into snow. Snow is not sticking on the roads.

8:20 p.m. Latest From Mary Kay Kleist

New guidance on snow totals, powerful winds and huge waves on Lake Michigan.

8:05 p.m. Driving Conditions Getting Worse

Heavy snow in north suburban Lake Forest is proving to be a challenge for drivers, as of Sunday night.

7:50 p.m. Latest Forecast Models

CBS 2's Robb Ellis says conditions will deteriorate very quickly overnight around the city. Travel will be very difficult all across Chicagoland overnight. Snow will continue through 9 a.m. in Illinois and until noon in Northwest Indiana, where there is only a winter weather advisory.


8 p.m. to 10 p.m.

Northwest of city changes over to snow.
Northeast wind gusts to 40 mph
Temps in mid 30s

10 p.m. to midnight

Most of city changes to snow
North wind gusts 40 mph to 50 mph
Temps dropping, visibility near zero.
Travel becomes difficult.
Snow rates 2 inches+ per hour

Midnight to 4 a.m.
Heavy snow continues
Visibility near zero
Wind gusts 35 mph to 45 mph
Blowing snow
Snow rates 2 inches+ per hour

NW Indiana changes to snow

4 a.m. to 6 a.m.

Heavy snow continues, but snow rates let up
Blowing snow
Wind gusts 30 mph to 40 mph
Lake waves 10 to 15 feet

6 a.m. to Noon

Snow wraps up from west to east
Temperatures in 20s to near 30
Winds remain 20 to 35 mph
Visibility improves

7:24 p.m. Metra Advisory

Metra advised riders to allow extra travel time Monday and to be cautious on platforms and near tracks. At this hour, the system plans to operate on a normal weekday schedule.

7:15 p.m. Snow Falling Hard In Northwest Suburbs 

In Vernon Hills, snow was falling fast.  Some people tried to get in some shopping before conditions got worse, CBS 2's Charlie DeMar reports. Snow was also falling steadily in western suburbs, link Glen Ellyn.

7:10 p.m.: Snow Plows Hit Chicago Streets 

Chicago has deployed 211 salt spreaders to clear the main roads and Lake Shore Drive. The city will expand it to about 280 salt spreaders after 8 p.m., according to John Tully, commissioner of Streets and Sanitation. Once the main roads are clear, the city will move to residential streets. The city currently has 360,000 tons of salt stored at 19 locations. Residents can view the snow fleet in real time. 

7:05 p.m. Latest Flight Cancellations

Ahead of the snowfall, O'Hare International Airport has canceled 700 flights. A total of 123 flights were canceled at Midway.  "We expect operations to stabilize by tomorrow morning when the snowfall ends," said Jamie Rhee, the commissioner for the city's Department Of Aviation.

6:30 p.m. Chicago Public Schools Open

The Chicago Public Schools will be open tomorrow, according to CEO Janice Jackson.

"We do plan on opening schools as normal tomorrow. We are making special preparations to make sure schools are safe,' she said at a news conference this evening. "We have been monitoring it for the last 48 hours and believe we have taken the necessary steps so students and teachers can get to school safely."

RELATED: School Closings

6:00 p.m. Chicago Department of Streets and Sanitation

The Department of Streets and Sanitation has deployed 211 snow vehicles with salt spreaders focusing on the city's arterial routes and Lake Shore Drive before transitioning to residential streets as needed.

5:15 p.m. ComEd Preparation

ComEd has opened its Emergency Operations Center, increased crew staffing and is readying equipment to quickly respond to potential outages. Customers can text OUT to 26633 to report outages and receive restoration information. ComEd encourages the public to call 1-800-334-7661 (or 1-800-955-8237 for Spanish speakers) if they encounter downed power lines.

3:37 p.m. Blizzard Warning For Chicago

Cook, DuPage, Will and Grundy counties will be under Blizzard Warnings starting at 6 p.m. The worst conditions are expected to hit these areas this evening.

2:50 p.m. Illinois Tollway Preparation 

The Illinois Tollway has deployed 196 snowplows to combat the overnight snowfall, according to a statement on sunday afternoon. Officials advise drivers in need of help on Tollway system to dial *999 from a cellphone for assistance from Illinois State Police District 15.

2:48 p.m. Chicago Airport Flight Cancellations

A total of 400 flights have been canceled at O'Hare International Airport and 121 flights have been canceled at Midway International Airport. Both airports are still reporting average delays around 15 minutes and over.

1:58 p.m. Cook County Weather Preparation

Cook County sent out an alert reminding residents to take caution when driving during the winter storm. The statement recommends storing a safety kit in vehicles along with keeping gas tanks at least half full.

1:45 p.m. Chicago Airport Flight Cancellations

A total of 311 flights have been canceled at O'Hare International Airport and 121 flights have been canceled at Midway International Airport. Both airports are still reporting average delays around 15 minutes and over.

12:41 p.m. Lake Michigan Warning

The Coast Guard sent out a statement warning people to stay away from the shores of Lake Michigan during the winter storm. According to the statement, the Lakeshore Flooding Warning is in effect and life threatening waves could be as high as 12 to 18 ft.

12:30 p.m. Chicago Airport Flight Cancellations

A total of 260 flights have been canceled at O'Hare International Airport and 114 flights have been canceled at Midway International Airport. Both airports are still reporting average delays around 15 minutes and over.

11:52 a.m. City Snow Update

Mayor Rahm Emanuel and city officials announced they will meet with Chicago Snow Command to update the public on winter weather preparations. This update will come at 5:30 p.m. on Sunday.

11:40 a.m. Blizzard Warning

A Blizzard Warning is in effect for parts of north central and northeast Illinois. Some of the counties include Some of the counties include Lake, McHenry, DeKalb, Kane, La Salle and Kendall.

11:15 a.m. Chicago Airport Flight Cancellations

A total of 205 flights have been canceled at O'Hare International Airport and 84 flights have been canceled at Midway International Airport. Both airports are reporting average delays around 15 minutes and over.


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