First potential major winter storm of the season coming Thursday - – Rockford’s News Leader

First potential major winter storm of the season coming Thursday evening

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This winter had been fairly quiet up until this week, as the first major winter storm of the season takes aim at the Stateline. This storm may produce a half of a foot or more for snowfall, resulting in major impacts to the Friday morning drive to work.

Winter Storm Warnings & Watches have been posted by the National Weather Service for Thursday evening through Friday afternoon. The watch highlights when the storm may arrive, and which spots could be impacted. The watch is out for all of northern Illinois and southern Wisconsin.

The showers get going after 7 pm Thursday evening, with heavy snow showers by early Friday morning. At times, snowfall rates may approach 1"/hour, meaning the snow may pile up quickly. The snow showers stay heavy to moderate through Friday morning, then tail off Friday afternoon. However, the snow showers may not end to Friday evening.

Snow totals will vary across our area. Narrow bands of heavy snow will determine which locations get the most snow, but for now the Stateline is under the heaviest portion of the storm, according to the latest storm track. 7-10" is possible along and north I-88, with lower amounts between 5-7" possible south of I-88. However, these amounts may still change, depending on the track of the storm. If the heavy snow bands track more north or south, these amounts will be adjusted.

The Friday morning commute will definitely be affected with major impacts. Plan on several inches of snow on the ground by the early morning hours, and snow covered roads throughout the morning. Set your alarm much earlier than usual to adjust for shoveling and slower travel times, and plan on your drive to work taking double the amount of time it usually takes as you'll have to go slow. We may see impacts last throughout Friday and even Friday night as the snow continues to fall.

Stay with the 13 Weather Authority on-air and online throughout the storm for updates.

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