A winter weather advisory has been issued for several Chicago-area counties as a powerful burst of snow could dump several inches in some parts of the area and wreak havoc on the evening commute Friday.
Advisories were issued for McHenry, DeKalb, Lake, Kane, DuPage, Cook, LaSalle, Kendall, Grundy, Will and Kankakee counties in Illinois and Lake, Porter, Newton and Jasper counties in Indiana beginning Friday afternoon and evening.
In McHenry, DeKalb, LaSalle, Kendall and Grundy counties, the advisory begins at 2 p.m. and continues through 6 a.m. Saturday. The remaining counties will begin at 5 p.m. and continue through 6 a.m. Saturday.
A moisture-filled system is set to move into the area Friday afternoon, beginning as snow across Chicago before heightening during the evening rush hour.
Locations north of Interstate 80 could see as much as 5 inches in accumulation while areas south could see anywhere from 1 to 3 inches, according to the weather alert. Locations in the western and southwestern suburbs could also see significant ice accumulations of up to two-tenths of an inch, while areas south of Chicago could see up to a tenth of an inch.
The snow is expected to transition to ice and sleet before turning to all rain by Saturday morning. It could switch back to snow before the system ends Saturday afternoon and evening, however. NBC's Storm Team 5 Meteorologist Paul Deanno said to expect a "slushy mess."
Because of the mixed precipitation expected, totals will largely depend on how quickly temperatures warm and the path of the system.
According to the advisory, a lull in precipitation is expected Saturday morning before a strong cold front brings "rapidly falling temperatures, scattered snow showers or squalls and strong westerly wind gusts of up to 45 mph Saturday afternoon."
Temperature highs on Saturday could reach near 40 degrees, but that won't last long as highs plunge to near 15 degrees by Sunday, with wind chill readings well below zero.
The frigid temperatures are expected to stick around through the start of the work week, giving Chicago its first prolonged taste of chilly weather in quite some time.
Storm Team 5 will continue to monitor developments in the days ahead. Check the developing forecast here.