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Illinois State Climatologist says frigid temperatures will follow snowfall

Several inches of heavy, wet snow fell in northern Illinois on Tuesday.
Jenna Dooley
Several inches of heavy, wet snow fell across northern Illinois early Tuesday.

The weather prompted scores of school and event closures across northern Illinois.

Conditions have varied across the state — rain in Chicago and several inches of slushy snow in areas north and west of the Illinois River.

Illinois State Climatologist Trent Ford says the rest of the week is expected to be active:

"This system will really be out of our hair as of Wednesday into Thursday, but then we get our next system coming in on Friday," Ford said. "That could take a little bit more of a southerly track, so maybe produce a little bit more snow and wintry weather for central Illinois. And then there's a system that's brewing out the Pacific right now that may follow that one.”

Ford also warns that temperatures will dip significantly into the weekend.

“This is one of those times, when it's one of the hazardous types of cold air," he said, "and so folks should just be ready for taking precaution because this weekend into next week will probably be the first real shot of cold air we've had this whole winter.”

Ford notes that December was mild in Illinois and snowfall totals are still below normal. But he says those could catch up quickly with just a few winter storm systems like this one.

Jenna Dooley has spent her professional career in public radio. She is a graduate of Northern Illinois University and the Public Affairs Reporting Program at the University of Illinois - Springfield. She returned to Northern Public Radio in DeKalb after several years hosting Morning Edition at WUIS-FM in Springfield. She is a former "Newsfinder of the Year" from the Illinois Associated Press and recipient of NIU's Donald R. Grubb Journalism Alumni Award. She is an active member of the Illinois News Broadcasters Association and an adjunct instructor at NIU.