Parts of the Chicago area were waking up to more than 8 inches of snow Saturday morning as a winter storm continued to barrel down on northern Illinois -- with snowfall still left to go in some areas.
A Winter Weather Advisory is scheduled to take effect in Lake and Cook counties from 8 p.m. Saturday until 9 a.m. Sunday.
A warning was previously in effect for Cook, Lake, DuPage, Winnebago, Boone, McHenry, Ogle, Lee, DeKalb and Kane, LaSalle, Kendall, Grundy, Will and Kankakee counties in Illinois, as well as Lake and Porter counties in Indiana, until 12 p.m. CST Saturday. A warning in Newton, Jasper and Benton counties in Indiana continues until 3 p.m. CST Saturday.
LaPorte County in Indiana is under a Winter Storm Warning through 1 p.m. CST.
"A Winter Storm Warning for snow means severe winter weather conditions will make travel very hazardous or impossible. If you must travel, keep an extra flashlight, food and water in your vehicle in case of an emergency," the National Weather Service said in a statement connected with the storm warning.
The National Weather Service warns that "travel could be very difficult" during the system.
A widespread snow system was forecast to continue throughout the day Saturday, dumping potentially several inches of snow before coming to an end for some locations.
The steady snow should taper off during the afternoon hours Saturday for much of the metro area and in the evening for northwest Indiana.
The real factor that continues to hover over snow total projections is an expected band of lake effect snow.
Lake effect showers keep the snow going overnight for counties closer to the lake, which would have a major impact on snow totals. If the lake effect system develops on the Chicago side of Lake Michigan and shifts east into northwest Indiana, it could bring several inches of additional accumulation to those areas before coming to an end Sunday afternoon and evening.
We will continue to update our forecasts as the system develops. Check back for the latest information.