Snowstorm could drop nine inches by Tuesday night
BY MICHAEL LANSU Staff Reporter March 3, 2013 3:06PM
Updated: March 4, 2013 2:14PM
A late-season winter storm could bring the largest snowfall of the year, dropping as much as 9 inches of powder over the Chicago area by Tuesday night, according to the National Weather Service.
Temperatures are expected to hover just below freezing during the next several days as a light frosting late Monday turns into a large-scale snow dump predicted hit just in time to wreak havoc on the roads Tuesday.
“You couldn’t time it any better,” said Ben Deubelbeiss, a meteorologist for the weather service, based in Romeoville. “The worst conditions we’re expecting (are) during the day on Tuesday.”
The predicted snowfall prompted the weather service to issue a winter storm warning alert for the region early Monday.
While some collar counties have seen snowfall on par with Tuesday’s predicted drop, the city of Chicago has not seen a snowfall as substantial this year, Deubelbeiss said.
The predicted 6 to 9 inches is likely to surpass the 5.4 inches accumulated at O’Hare International Airport on Feb. 26 and Feb. 27, the weather service said. That storm blanketed north suburban Antioch with 12.1 inches of snow.
Additionally, the snow may fall as quickly as 1 to 1 1/2 inches per hour during the day Tuesday, which will make snow removal and travel extremely dangerous, the weather service said. Meanwhile, meteorologists say they expect wind gusts to reach 30 miles per hour.
For Chicago residents who find themselves digging out cars and walkways, warmer temperatures forecast later in the week give cause for optimism.
In fact, much of the snowfall could begin to melt by Thursday when the weather service predicts temperatures will climb into the 40s where they should stay for much of the weekend.