'Multi-Faceted Storm' Could Bring Flooding: National Weather Service
Melting snow, frozen ground and rain will mean an elevated flood risk.
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 Will, Kendall, Cook, DuPage, DeKalb 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