Chicago, IL

On New Years Day, Chicago braces for first winter snowstorm of 2022

Jennifer Geer

Here's the timeline of what's headed for Chicago over the next 24 hours

(CHICAGO) Saturday, January 1, 2022. This winter has not been a snowy one for the Chicago region. But that is all going to change today when some areas could get up to nine inches of snowfall.

Northern Illinois is under a Winter Storm Warning, according to the National Weather Service (NOAA). The warning is in effect until midnight tonight.
National forecast for Jan 1, 2022Map courtesy of

The storm began as a Winter Storm Watch and was upgraded Friday to a Winter Storm Warning for the following Illinois counties:

  • Boone
  • Cook
  • DeKalb
  • DuPage
  • Grundy
  • Kane
  • Kendall
  • La Salle
  • Lee
  • McHenry
  • Ogle
  • Will
  • Winnebago

Timeline of events

Saturday morning: ABC7 reports that Saturday morning will begin with a light drizzle that will transition to light snow, possibly creating hazardous driving conditions in some places when the snow begins to accumulate.

Saturday afternoon: Expect snow to begin between 12 PM and 4 PM Saturday afternoon. The heaviest snowfall will be between 2 PM to 7 PM. Also, during the afternoon, winds will pick up and could get up to 35 MPH by Saturday afternoon into the evening.

Saturday overnight into Sunday morning: The snow will end by early Sunday morning, although lake effect snow could bring a couple more inches to Chicago and Lake County.

Sunday afternoon: By noon Sunday, January 2, the snow will have tapered off but temperatures will plunge, with wind chills expected to be in the single digits.

Travel disruptions

NOAA warns of heavy snow, gusty conditions, and hazardous roads. And with the storm occurring on New Year's Day, flight delays and cancellations are expected.

The Illinois Department of Transportation warned of hazardous conditions in a statement.

“IDOT crews will be out on the roads but conditions could still be extremely hazardous, so we encourage motorists to ask themselves if they really need to make the trip,” said Illinois Transportation Secretary Omer Osman. “If you do have to travel, remember that the bitter cold and wind reduces the effectiveness of the materials we use to treat snow and ice. There will be lengthy travel times so make sure to prepare your vehicle in the event you are stranded.”

NOAA suggests if you must travel, keep an extra flashlight, food, and water in your car. You can check Illinois road conditions at

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Chicago, IL

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