350 Chicago Flights Canceled As Severe Weather Approaches

Nearly 350 flights were canceled Thursday at O’Hare and Midway international airports as potentially severe thunderstorms and high winds threatened the Chicago area.

Just before noon, 324 flights were canceled at O’Hare and 24 were canceled at Midway.

A Severe Thunderstorm Warning was issued for central Grundy County until noon after a storm near Mazon brought 60 mph wind gusts and quarter-sized hail to the area. The storm was morning northeast at 55 mph.

Areas along the lakefront and just south of Chicago were under a slight risk for severe weather while locations north, west and southwest were under the marginal risk. 

A Tornado Warning was issued for northwestern Livingston County in central Illinois until 11:15 a.m. The National Weather Service said a severe thunderstorm capable of producing a tornado was located near Pontiac and was moving northwest at 55 mph.

Scattered storms were expected to move into the area ahead of a cold front that will force temperatures to plunge. Some of the storms could potentially be severe, and heavy rains may cause localized flooding. 

A Wind Advisory took effect for most of northern Illinois and northwest Indiana beginning at 10 a.m. DeKalb, Kane, DuPage, Cook, LaSalle, Kendall, Grundy, Will, McHenry and Kankakee counties are all under the advisory in Illinois, as are Lake, Porter, Newton, Jasper, and Benton in northwest Indiana.

The advisory will remain in effect through Thursday evening, according to the National Weather Service. Wind speeds in excess of 50 mph are expected in the southern part of the advisory area, including Kankakee, Will, and Grundy counties, and wind gusts between 45 and 50 mph are expected elsewhere in the advisory area.

In the late evening hours on Thursday, temperatures will begin to drop as the low pressure system continues its push, transitioning any lingering rain to snow showers. By the time Friday rolls around, high temperatures likely won’t reach 40 degrees, as unseasonably cool weather takes hold for several days.

Over the weekend, sunny skies Saturday will give away to potential drizzle or light snow on Sunday, and temperatures will remain in the high-30s or low-40s over the two days.

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