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Snow cancels flights, snarls evening commute

The winter storm that slammed Chicago cancelled over 1,000 flights combined at O’Hare and Midway airports.

Snow also slowed Tuesday evening’s commute. Go to http://wgntv.com/traffic for the latest updates.

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A large and heavy early-March snowfall snarled roadways in the Chicago area Tuesday.

Chicago Streets and Sanitation Commissioner Charles Williams said he expects main roads to be cleared by Wednesday morning.

“Tomorrow should be fine,” Williams said Tuesday. “My advice tomorrow is to go about your daily lives as normal. We will be out all night.”

The city stationed extra plows near Lake Shore Drive on Tuesday and removed a part of the median around North Avenue to avoid a repeat of the cars and buses trapped on the road during the Feb. 2, 2011, storm. Suburbs had their salt trucks and plows out in full force as well to keep up with the continuous flurries.

Vehicles spun out and crashed on several interstates. Metra spokesman Michael Gillis said slightly more people than usual took the system’s trains to work Tuesday.

Chicago Tribune contributed to this report

Chicago’s biggest storm since the Groundhog Day Blizzard is starting to wind down.

Visibility in the area is starting to improve, a sign that the steady moderate to heavy snow is beginning to transition into light snow.

As the snow starts to wind down, winds are increasing and the snow is blowing and drifting.

Additional accumulation from 7 p.m. to Midnight is expected to be in the 1″ to 3″ range.   This will push storm totals to 6″ to 10″ with a few isolated 11″ or 12″ reports possible.

The very latest reports…

Rolling Meadows 7.5 inches

CT WiBrett Jordan of Elgin makes about a two-mile walk home from the bus stop in the snowy weather. Jordan said the worst part was the "snow blowing in my eyes." — Stacey Wescott, Chicago Tribune, March 5, 20nterStormB.jpg

Brett Jordan of Elgin makes about a two-mile walk home from the bus stop in the snowy weather. Jordan said the worst part was the “snow blowing in my eyes.” — Stacey Wescott, Chicago Tribune, March 5, 20

Elburn 10. 0 inches

Sycamore 8.5 inches

Carol Stream 6.5 inches

Elgin 8.0 inches

Portage 7.3

Lake Village 6.5 inches

Cary 6.3 inches

Cicero 5.9 inches

Valparaiso 7.5 inches

Carbon Hill 5.9 niches

Some roadways moving well during snowy evening rush.

Chicago Department of Aviation’s Karen Pride said that in total, over 1,000 flights were cancelled at O’Hare and Midway airports.

The best advice, as always, is to check the status of your flight before you head to the airport.

The aviation department also says to arrive at the airport at least two hours in advance of the flight.

FOR THE LATEST WEATHER UPDATES, GO TO CHICAGO WEATHER CENTER

The llinois Department of Transportation’s Mike Claffey says that despite IDOT’s best efforts, roadways are still slushy due to the snowstorm. Claffey urged evening commuters to be cautious.

Airlines canceled about 1,000 flights in advance of the snow.

The Chicago’s Department of Aviation department says more than 850 flights were canceled at O’Hare International Airport.

225 were canceled at Midway, not including Southwest Airlines, which has cancelled all flights between 10 a.m and 5 p.m.

The best advice, as always, is to check the status of your flight before you head to the airport.

The aviation department also says to arrive at the airport at least two hours in advance of the flight.

FOR THE LATEST WEATHER UPDATES, GO TO CHICAGO WEATHER CENTER

An incoming winter storm is forecast to drop between four to eight inches of snow on the Chicago area Tuesday.

But morning commuters didn’t have it as bad as they will in the evening.

Some of them decided to ride Metra trains instead of taking their chances with the roads.

High winds blew the snow sideways at the Metra station in Glen Ellyn.

But that snow melted immediately after it landed.

But Metra passengers said they expected it to get wet and nasty later on.

“I just don’t want to be driving in it when I come home tonight,” said Metra passenger Marilyn White.  “So, I’d figured the round trip on the train was the better choice.”

The earliest train riders found themselves just getting wet, instead of walking in snow.

“There’s basically no snow on the ground right now, but I know it’s coming.  I was expecting a few inches this morning already,” said passenger Paul Voswinkel.

snowcarsAs the snow starts to fall across the Chicago area, officials are preparing to keep the roads clear ahead of the Tuesday evening rush hour

The Illinois Tollway has activated its full fleet of 182 snowplows in response to snow falling system-wide during this morning’s rush hour and increasing in intensity throughout the day and continuing through the evening.

For the latest updates, go to wgntv.com/traffic or follow WGN’s traffic on Twitter @ChicagoDrives

 

Here are some of the latest traffic tweets:

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