Reports: Heavy snowstorm pummels Chicago to Detroit as school, flight cancellations mount

By Brian Lada, AccuWeather meteorologist and staff writer
By Ashley Williams, AccuWeather staff writer
February 09, 2018, 6:26:23 PM EST

As of 6:25 p.m. EST Friday, this story is no longer being updated. Track the lingering snow on weather radar by clicking here.

A disruptive snowstorm is causing treacherous travel conditions over the midwestern and interior northeastern United States.

Conditions will be dangerous through Friday evening as snow spreads eastward. The heaviest snow is forecast to fall in southern Michigan and northern Indiana, where up to a foot of accumulation is possible.

Hundreds of flights have been delayed and canceled, while many schools are closed.

Interactive weather radar
More snow to blanket Chicago, Detroit through Sunday
Life-saving items to keep in your car in case a winter emergency happens

4:40 p.m. EST Friday:

Heavy snow continues to fall along a narrow area from northern Illinois through southern Michigan. Some area in this zone have picked up over a foot of accumulation, including 14 inches in Mishawaka, Indiana.

3:48 p.m. EST Friday:

The number of accidents in Michigan is on the rise as snow continues to streak across the state.

Dozens of vehicles were involved in an accident on Interstate 94 just east of Kalamazoo, Michigan with some vehicles ending up off the road. People driving in this area should avoid the highway as it may remained closed into this evening as crews work to clear the highway.

A section of US 23 in Michigan is also closed following a deadly pileup involving multiple cars and tractor trailers.

3:03 p.m. EST Friday:

Nearly 950 flights have been canceled and an additional 700 delayed at Chicago's O'Hare International Airport today, according to flight stats.

Nearly two dozen flights have already been canceled at the airport for Saturday with these numbers having the potential to climb as another batch of snow moves through the city.

1:35 p.m. EST Friday:

Detroit, and the areas north and west of the city, will see the heaviest snowfall for the remainder of the afternoon, according to AccuWeather Meteorologist Evan Duffey.

“At this point, there’s been a lot of snow so roads are really snow packed,” Duffey said. "In southern Michigan visibility will probably remain low, which will make travel difficult on top of the conditions on the surface."

The northern part of Chicago might see a break in snow, according to Duffey, but the southern parts of the city will continue to see snow through the afternoon.


12:19 p.m. EST Friday:

A six-car crash in Bay County, Michigan, shut down the right lane on U.S. Route 10 eastbound.

11:05 a.m. EST Friday:

Watch Reed Timmer's latest report from snow-pummeled Detroit:

10:25 a.m. EST Friday:

Wintry weather continues to plague travelers in Michigan, where several accidents are causing delays around Detroit. Some ramps, including the eastbound I-96 ramp to southbound I-275, are closed due to weather conditions.

AccuWeather Extreme Meteorologist Reed Timmer is covering the winter storm from I-75 in Detroit.

8:20 a.m. CST Friday:

A total of 9 inches of snow have fallen within the past 24 hours in Belvidere, Illinois, according to the National Weather Service.

Radar screenshot - Illinois 2/9/2018

6:49 a.m. CST Friday:

More than 800 schools are closed Friday across Michigan as the state gets blasted with snow.

Chicago has also closed a number of schools as a heavy snow band passes over the city. There have been reports of traffic accidents due to slippery travel conditions on Chicago roads.

Meanwhile, flight cancellations continue for O'Hare and Midway international airports. Some flights scheduled to arrive at O'Hare are facing delays of up to 1 hour and 33 minutes, according to the Federal Aviation Administration.

6:42 a.m. EST Friday:

Deteriorating travel conditions have led to lowered speed limits on some highways in Ohio, according to the Ohio Department of Transportation.

4:00 a.m. CST Friday:

Snow has moved into the Detroit and Cleveland metro areas just in time for the morning commute. Due to prior cold conditions, snow will quickly stick to the roadways, making it necessary for motorists to slow down to avoid spinouts and multi-vehicle accidents.


2:20 a.m. CST Friday:

Large stretches of roadway in northern and central Iowa are slippery and snow covered, including portions of Interstate 80, according to the Iowa Department of Transportation. Up to 9 inches of snow have fallen near Fort Dodge.


Roads conditions on Interstate 80 near Iowa City, Iowa, early Friday morning. (Image/Iowa Department of Transportation)

1:00 a.m. CST Friday:

The snow that swept through South Dakota on Thursday broke an 24-year-old snowfall record in the town of Mitchell.

As the snow exits South Dakota and sweeps eastward into the western Great Lakes, roadway conditions continue to deteriorate across northern Illinois, including in Chicago.

IL Road conditions 2.9 AM

A map of northern Illinois showing road conditions early Friday morning. (Image/Illinois Department of Transportation)

11:30 p.m. CST Thursday:

Departure flights from Chicago's O'Hare International Airport are being delayed an average of 45 minutes as snow continues to move into the city. Over half a foot of snow could bury the Windy City by Friday night.

10:00 p.m. CST Thursday:

Numerous schools in Iowa have announced two-hour delays on Friday morning due to the snowy conditions. Between 2 and 5 inches of snow have piled up across northern parts of the state, with locally higher amounts. A trained spotter near Fort Dodge reported 7.5 inches of snow so far from the storm.

8:41 p.m. CST Thursday:

Snow is leading to dangerous road conditions in South Dakota, and officials advise that motorists stay off the roads in Pennington County. Pennington County is located in western South Dakota and includes Rapid City.

7:30 p.m. CST Thursday:

The Department of Streets and Sanitation has deployed over 200 snow trucks across the Chicago area to salt and plow roads around the city.

plow trucks

A map showing the location of plow trucks around Chicago. (Image/City of Chicago)

Many roads in and around the city are currently wet, but snow will likely begin to accumulate on roads overnight as steadier snow moves into Chicago.

Snow has been falling for several hours in the northwestern corner of the state, causing roads in this area to be partially or mostly covered in ice or snow. People planning to drive through this area of Illinois should allow for extra time to reach their destination.

road conditions illinois

A map of northern Illinois showing road conditions on Thursday evening. (Image/Illinois Department of Transportation)

6:00 p.m. CST Thursday:

The first flakes are starting to fall in Chicago, with snow advancing eastward across the region. Snow may fall in Chicago for more than 24 consecutive hours, with temperatures hovering in the 20s F.

5:10 p.m. CST Thursday:

All Chicago Public Schools will be closed on Friday due to the approaching winter weather.

AccuWeather meteorologists are forecasting 8 to 12 inches of snow in the city, with some locally higher amounts possible.

3:00 p.m. CST Thursday:

Snow-covered roads are leading to slower-than-normal travel across Iowa, including on Interstate 35 north of Des Moines.

Some areas in central and eastern Iowa could receive up to a foot of snow accumulation through Friday.

iowa plow

A plow truck on I-35 northbound north of Des Moines, Iowa, on Thursday afternoon. (Photo/IowaDOT)

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