Chicago Weather

Warnings, Flight Cancellations, ‘One of the Worst Predicted Storms' in Years

The storms have sparked warnings from officials, city governments, transportation agencies and more as forecasters urged people to stay alert and be ready to seek shelter

Severe weather is rapidly moving across the Chicago area Friday, bringing the threat of hail, damaging winds, heavy rain and possibly tornadoes.

The storms have sparked warnings from officials, city governments, transportation agencies and more as forecasters urged people to stay alert and be ready to seek shelter.

Here's the latest:

9 p.m.: Power Outages Increase As Storms Move East

As severe storms have continued to move eastward at a rapid pace across the Chicago area, thousands more customers are now affected by power outages in the immediate aftermath.

According to ComEd, more than 47,500 customers are currently affected by power outages, nearly double the outages at the start of the previous hour.

8:20 p.m.: Over 27,600 ComEd Customers Without Power as Storms Ravage Chicago Area

As severe thunderstorms continue to impact the Chicago area, over 27,600 ComEd customers are currently without power, a number that is likely to grow as storms quickly move to the east.

Of over 4 million customers in the area, ComEd is currently reporting 226 active outages.

8:10 p.m.: Officials Warn of "Life-Threatening Situation" as Severe Thunderstorm Warning For Much of Area Warns of 90 MPH Winds

Weather officials are warning of a "life-threatening situation" as 90 mph winds and possibly tornadoes move into the area.

Residents in the area are advised to take shelter as the powerful storm has the potential to cause structural damage and cause tornadoes.

Additionally, flooding has caused closures on the outbound Edens Expressway between Skokie Road and Willow Road, causing traffic delays, according to Total Traffic Chicago.

7:25 p.m.: A Tornado Warning Is In Effect in DeKalb County, Residents Advised to Take Shelter

A tornado warning is now in effect for DeKalb County, as a storm capable of producing winds up to 80 miles per hour quickly approaches the area.

6:55 p.m.: Next Line of Storms Begins to Move Into Chicago Area, Winds of 75 mph and Tornadoes Possible

Another round of dangerous storms is now moving into the Chicago area, with wind gusts up to 75 miles per hour possible, with potential for tornadoes as well.

This line is expected to move very quickly, leaving little time to take cover once a potential tornado warning is issued. Residents are advised to prepare for the event of losing electricity.

5:55 p.m.: Much of Chicago Area to Face Next Round of Storms From 7-9 p.m., Frequent Lightning, Hail Expected

According to the latest update from the National Weather Service, the next round of strong storms will likely affect much of the Chicago area from 7 to 9 p.m., with frequent lightning, strong winds and hail expected.

Tornadoes and damaging winds remain possible in the second round of storms and are the primary threat in this evening's severe weather.

5:30 p.m.: First Round of Storms Begins to Dissipate, Strong Storms Still on the Way

While much of the Chicago area begins to see warnings expiring around 5:30 p.m., a second round of strong storms is still on the way for the region.

The next sequence of storms is expected to affect the far-western parts of the Chicago area in the 6 p.m. hour, with the severe weather threat extending to 11 p.m.

While damaging hail was a primary threat in the day's first round of storms and remains possible in the second round, damaging winds are the primary threat in the storms expected this evening.

Wind gusts could approach up to 70 miles per hour, according to the National Weather Service, with storms continuing to move eastward at 60 to 70 miles per hour.

5:05 p.m.: The Second Round of Severe Storms is Expected After 6 p.m.

Another storm with the same threats is slated to move in sometime after 6 p.m. from west to east and will blow through the area quickly, traveling at speeds of 60-to-70 miles per hour.

5 p.m.: Ground stop at O'Hare Airport Now a Ground Delay

A ground delay has been reported at Chicago's O'Hare International Airport for thunderstorms and flight cancellations continue to climb as severe weather moves through the area.

4:40 p.m.: More Counties Under Alerts

Most recently, a severe thunderstorm warning went into effect for central Will County and southeastern Cook County in Illinois as well as Lake and Porter counties in northwest Indiana until 5:30 p.m.

4:24 p.m.: Latest warnings issued for parts of Chicago area

See the latest weather alerts here.

Most recently, a severe thunderstorm warning went into effect for Kankakee County until 5 p.m. Additionally, a severe thunderstorm warning was issued for southwestern Will County until 4:45 p.m. Forecasters say the storm could contain golf ball-size hail and advise anyone who may be in its path to seek shelter.

Severe thunderstorms warning were also issued for southern DeKalb County and northern LaSalle County until 5 p.m. as well as for east central LaSalle County and Grundy County until 4:30 p.m.

Similarly, a tornado watch is in effect for the entire Chicago viewing area until 10 p.m., according to the National Weather Service. Included are the following counties: Cook, DeKalb, DuPage, Grundy, Kane, Kankakee, Kendall, Lake, LaSalle, McHenry and Will counties in Illinois, as well as Jasper, Lake, Newton and Porter counties in Indiana.

4:15 p.m.: Ground Stop Issued at O'Hare Airport

A ground stop has been reported at Chicago's O'Hare International Airport for thunderstorms as severe weather enters the area.

With potentially dangerous weather in the form of thunderstorms, damaging winds, and the risk of hail and tornadoes threatening the entire Chicago area Friday, cancellations have climbed beyond 200 at both O'Hare and Midway airports, the Chicago Department of Aviation's Fly Chicago website shows.

4:09 p.m.: Illinois Officials Say 'Entire State Will Be Affected'

The Illinois Emergency Management Agency advised residents of Illinois to "be prepared for the worst as a large—and potentially severe—storm system approaches."

“The entire state will be affected and this is one of the worst predicted storms we’ve seen in years,” IEMA Director Alicia Tate-Nadeau said in a statement. “If you have a weather radio, I would definitely pull that out.

Track the systems live with our interactive radar here

4 p.m.: Metra Warns of Potential Delays

"Due to predicted severe weather and high wind warnings, some trains may incur delays this afternoon and evening," Metra alerted riders. "Metra will make every attempt to operate trains on-time according to their schedule. Updated information will be provided if changes in schedule or delays occur."

3 p.m.: Severe Weather Threat Heightens

The threat for severe weather across much of the Chicago area was heightened Friday afternoon as weather alerts, including tornado watches, were issued for a majority of the region - just as the first of two rounds of dangerous storms arrived.

Much of the area, particularly southern and western suburbs along with portions of northwest Indiana, are now under a moderate risk for severe weather threats, meaning widespread severe storms are likely. The moderate threat level is the fourth of five-scale system from the Storm Prediction Center.

Between 3 p.m. and 10 p.m. is when the area will see its greatest risk for intense and potentially severe weather, with "two rounds possible" in that time frame, the National Weather Service tweeted.

2:50 p.m.: 'Be Prepared to Take Action'

As the storms rapidly approached the Chicago area, forecasters warned residents to have a plan in place and a way of receiving alerts.

No matter where you are, it's critical you have a way to receive alerts for a possible storm.

Stay up-to-date on the forecast in your area by signing up for weather alerts through the NBC 5 app. This allows you to receive immediately get notified about watches warnings and advisories from the National Weather Service as they occur.

You can also check the track of the storms through the NBC 5 Storm Team radar on the app.

2:34 p.m.: Tornado Watch Issued for Chicago Area

See the latest weather alerts here.

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