Weather Updates

Chicago weather: 4 to 8 inches of snow coming

During 'Groundhog Day Blizzard' Mike Denny uses push broom clear more than foot snow off his car  Feb. 2

During the "Groundhog Day Blizzard," Mike Denny uses a push broom to clear more than a foot of snow off his car Feb. 2, 2011. On Thursday, the Chicago area is expected to see its first significant snowfall since last year's storm. | Scott R. Brandush~Sun

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Updated: February 13, 2012 9:12AM

Dress warmly, avoid braking suddenly and, above all, do not panic.

Things to recall as the city re-acquaints itself with snow Thursday — perhaps as much as eight inches and just in time to bedevil evening commuters.

“It’s going to be a shock to the system,” said National Weather Service meteorologist Ed Fenelon. “We’ve been experiencing weather typical of November or March. This is now going to be a punch of January weather.”

The snow will begin as more of an annoying poke Thursday morning. The wallop comes in the afternoon through the evening, Fenelon said. Mother Nature is expected to toss in wind gusts reaching 35 mph during the evening hours.

The snow should taper off Thursday night, but the stinging cold will remain through the weekend, forecasters say, with low temperatures hovering near single digits.

If you’re dreading the snow, remember, by this time of the season, the city has typically seen about 13 inches of snow. Through Tuesday, we’ve had only 1.9 inches in the Chicago area, Fenelon said. Until Thursday, this was set to be one of the least snowy seasons in recorded history, Fenelon said.

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