Chicago-Area Residents Urged to Secure Outdoor Holiday Decorations Ahead of ‘Dangerous' Winds

Chicago-area residents should secure all outdoor holiday decorations and lighter outdoor furniture due to "damaging winds" expected throughout the Chicago area Wednesday evening, officials warned.

"Secure any outdoor decorations, including holiday decorations, and lighter outdoor furniture," the National Weather Service said in a warning.

The National Weather Service issued a high wind warning from 6 p.m. Wednesday to 9 a.m. Thursday for parts of north-central and northeast Illinois.

The following counties are included in the wind warning: Cook, DuPage, Kane, Winnebago, Boone, McHenry, Lake, Ogle, Lee, DeKalb, LaSalle, Kendall.

Winds are expected to reach 30 to 35 mph, with some gusts sweeping through the Chicago area at 60 mph. Officials said the most damaging, high winds are expected overnight between 8 p.m. Wednesday and 3 a.m. Thursday.

The wind gusts could blow down trees and power lines, officials warned, with "widespread power outages" possible.

The National Weather Service advised cautioned while driving in windy conditions, especially on highways and open roads. Residents are asked to avoid the outdoors during the warning, specifically in forested areas and around trees.

The National Weather Service warned that people should remain on lower levels of their homes and avoid windows during the windstorm.

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