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- The first is a possible period of heavy snow and ice mainly along and north of Interstate 88 late Wednesday and early Thursday. This could lead to snowy and icy roads and hazardous travel.
- The second is heavy rainfall, which is expected to enter the area late Wednesday and into Thursday morning mainly near and south of Interstate 88 and Interstate 290. This could lead to standing water and possible flooding.
- The third is warm, moist air that will enter the entire Chicago area Thursday afternoon. This could lead to snow run-off, melting snow and the possibility for a dense fog.
- The fourth is strong and potentially damaging winds that are expected to enter the area Thursday night. The winds could cause minor damage.
A couple of inches of snow may accumulate before the wintry mix changes to all rain early Thursday morning, according to the National Weather Service.
A flood watch has also been issued from 3 a.m. Thursday through Thursday afternoon for Kane, Cook, Lake, McHenry, DuPage, Will, Grundy, and Kendall counties.
High-standing water and flooding is possible in poor drainage and flood-prone low-lying areas. Significant localized flooding is also possible for area streams, creeks and river, according to the NWS.
Snow-blocked storm drains will also lead to ponding and standing water in urban and suburban areas, which could lead to hazardous travel conditions.
Visit the National Weather Service for more updates.
The above information was updated at 4:30 p.m. on Feb. 19.
ORIGINAL ARTICLE: Mother Nature is not going to hold anything back in the coming days.
A powerful storm system is expected to enter the Chicago area late Wednesday night and continue through early Friday. The muti-faceted storm will bring with it snow, ice, thunderstorms, hail, damaging winds and heavy rain and temperatures in the 40s and 50s that could lead to melting snow and the potential for flooding, according to a Wednesday morning video briefing from the National Weather Service.
A flood watch has been issued for late Wednesday through Thursday morning for several Chicago-area counties, including Cook, DuPage, Kendall, Will, DeKalb, Kendall and Kankakee. The flood watch means high-standing water and flooding is possible in poor drainage and flood-prone, low-lying areas with significant rises and localized floods also possible for area streams, creeks and rivers.
The threat of heavy snow and ice will come at the beginning of the storm from around 3 a.m. to 9 a.m. Thursday. Locally heavy rain and possible flooding is expected from 3 a.m. to 12 p.m. Thursday and the possibility of a thunderstorm with hail could occur between 3 a.m. to after 9 a.m. on Thursday, according to the National Weather Service video briefing.
The snow and ice risk will be highest for counties close to the Wisconsin border.
Meanwhile, the heavy rain and flood threat will be great near and south of Interstate 88 and 290 with less of a risk closer to the Wisconsin border, according to the NWS. The thunderstorm and hail risk will be greatest for communities south and southwest of Chicago.
Mid-day Thursday, temperatures are expected to warm and the snow is expected to melt with a dense fog possible. Thunderstorms are again possible — with high winds — mid-afternoon and into the evening, according to the NWS.
"The threat increases as you head farther south and east. As you head northwest toward Rockford, there is still some potential for damaging winds with a squall line," according to the National Weather Service video briefing. "But really the threat is greatest from Chicago to Ottawa and points south and east with an increasing threat as you get into Indiana."
Strong winds in excess of 50 mph could then affect the entire area Thursday evening through Friday morning.
Visit the National Weather Service-Chicago website for the latest