Updated: February 5, 2013 4:21PM
A heavy band of snow hit the Chicago area Tuesday afternoon right before the evening commute. The National Weather Service predicted accumulation to exceed an inch per hour at times.
Travelers are being warned to be prepared to deal with intense snowfall and plan to leave extra travel time to get to their destinations.
Monday marked the largest snowfall of 2013, according to the National Weather Service.
As of noon Monday, 2.9 inches of snow had been recorded at O’Hare International Airport, the official measuring point for Chicago, NWS spokesman Matt Friedlein said. The snowfall ended at 9 a.m. at O’Hare and by 10 a.m. throughout the area, he said.
Another inch to 1½ inches are expect to fall Tuesday with the heaviest snowfall expected in Lake County and northern Cook County, Friedlein said.
Tuesday’s snowfall will mark the fifth straight day of accumulated snowfall in the city, Friedlein said.
But even with the snow accumulation, the area’s precipitation is well below normal, said Amy Seeley of the National Weather Service, adding that the effects of last summer’s drought are still being felt throughout the area.
“This seems like a big deal, but we’re still well below our snow normals,” she said. “This isn’t going to do much.”