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More than 1,500 flights canceled as snowstorm slams Midwest

More than 1,200 US flights have been canceled Friday as a winter storm slammed the Midwest with at l...

Posted: Feb 9, 2018 8:51 PM
Updated: Feb 9, 2018 8:51 PM

More than 1,200 US flights have been canceled Friday as a winter storm slammed the Midwest with at least 1 inch of snow per hour.

Heavy snow and strong winds already are pounding Chicago and Detroit, where public school systems opted not to open Friday, CNN meteorologist Haley Brink said.

Some 25 million Americans are under winter weather alerts Friday

Chicago could see 14 inches of snow Friday, then 4 more inches this weekend

"We are getting more snow today, tomorrow and Sunday than we have normally gotten in the last two winters in any one period of time," Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel said in a Friday news conference, adding that the city's top priority is the safety of residents.

"Whether that's young kids, homeless, elderly, sick, commuters -- in every capacity we are responding and ensuring that people are able to handle this weather."

More than 25 million Americans are under winter weather alerts as an arctic front pushes from Montana through the Midwest, CNN meteorologists said.

Chicago could get around a foot of snow -- 8 to 14 inches -- by late Friday, plus 4 more inches through the weekend, forecasters said.

The bulk of flight cancellations affect Chicago's O'Hare and Midway airports and Detroit Metropolitan Wayne County Airport, according to the tracking site FlightAware.com.

Kieran Sheridan, chief operating officer for the Chicago Department of Aviation, said in a Friday press conference that the city's airports were "well-prepared."

About 280 heavy snow equipment operators were working on the airfields at Midway and O'Hare, said Sheridan, who warned travelers to give themselves extra time when heading to the airport.

"Currently delays at O'Hare are between 30 and 45 minutes, and at Midway, approximately 15 minutes," he said.

Four major US airlines -- Delta, United, Frontier and Southwest -- have issued weather waivers for passengers, allowing travelers to change their reservations without incurring fees.

Chicago's biggest snowstorm in 3 years

A foot of snow is still a big deal for Chicagoans. Since 1884, the city has had only nine days when 12 or more inches of snow fell.

In 2011, residents weathered 20 inches of snow over two days. A storm in February 2015, logging in at 16.2 inches, was the last time Chicago had more than 10 inches of snow in a single storm.

Chicagoans headed to grocery and hardware stores Thursday to stock up on food and essentials before the storm.

"We have our shovels, we have our potassium for the sidewalks," Pam Smith told CNN affiliate WGN. "We have our food, our wine and our fireplace."

Authorities across Illinois prepared some 300 pieces of snow-fighting equipment and thousands of tons of salt for nearly 16,000 miles of highways and state roads.

Road conditions began deteriorating Thursday night as the system neared Chicago, the Illinois Department of Transportation tweeted.

"Our crews are out in full force clearing snow but please consider postponing any unnecessary travel!"

Rachel Linn shared a photo of a tranquil snow-covered street early Friday. "Road conditions are abysmal," she said, adding she'll take the train to make her way around the city Friday.

The BNSF line on Chicago's Metra commuter rail service is operating Friday but on an adjusted snow schedule, the system said in a statement Thursday.

"We will be doing everything we can to prepare for and combat this major winter storm," said Metra CEO/Executive Director Jim Derwinski in the statement. "We will also do everything we can to make sure our customers are up to date with the latest information about their trains."

Freddy Travis, who works in an ad agency downtown, shared a picture of the city's Magnificent Mile blanketed in snow while a man shoveled the sidewalk.

Travis told CNN via Facebook the snow definitely affected his morning workout. "Honestly it was a workout just getting to the gym," he said.

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 119066

Reported Deaths: 3612
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Marion21563768
Lake10745324
Elkhart6734112
St. Joseph6679115
Allen6364205
Hamilton4965109
Vanderburgh384231
Hendricks2779124
Monroe267137
Tippecanoe259013
Johnson2362125
Clark226757
Porter222447
Delaware201162
Cass19589
Vigo187928
Madison171475
LaPorte151941
Warrick140743
Floyd140464
Howard133964
Kosciusko127117
Bartholomew119357
Marshall102124
Dubois100919
Boone99746
Grant96636
Hancock94843
Noble92932
Henry82226
Jackson77610
Wayne77314
Morgan73940
Shelby68329
Daviess68129
Dearborn67928
LaGrange64711
Clinton63414
Harrison59824
Putnam59011
Gibson5455
Knox5379
Lawrence51829
Montgomery51321
DeKalb49111
White48814
Decatur46139
Miami4394
Greene42936
Fayette42314
Jasper4032
Steuben3977
Scott39311
Posey3541
Sullivan33812
Jennings31712
Franklin31525
Clay3105
Ripley3108
Orange28724
Whitley2876
Carroll28013
Adams2773
Wabash2758
Starke2737
Washington2702
Wells2694
Spencer2683
Jefferson2523
Huntington2503
Fulton2462
Tipton22922
Randolph2238
Perry22213
Jay1920
Newton17411
Owen1711
Martin1690
Pike1691
Rush1584
Vermillion1320
Fountain1302
Blackford1223
Pulaski1141
Crawford1100
Parke1072
Brown1033
Benton860
Ohio797
Union790
Switzerland690
Warren411
Unassigned0227

Ohio Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 152907

Reported Deaths: 4783
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Franklin27283615
Cuyahoga17603657
Hamilton13340321
Montgomery7993166
Lucas7377364
Butler6151112
Summit5393252
Warren313649
Mahoning3114282
Marion311447
Stark2946175
Pickaway268445
Lorain234286
Delaware232821
Fairfield214654
Licking196063
Columbiana195180
Wood194273
Trumbull1921132
Clark185341
Clermont176123
Lake166051
Greene153634
Medina149339
Miami147652
Allen147372
Portage117766
Mercer113919
Erie96047
Tuscarawas94320
Wayne94268
Richland94119
Ross90426
Madison85512
Darke81144
Athens7402
Geauga73349
Hancock73110
Belmont72427
Lawrence68622
Shelby66910
Ashtabula66248
Auglaize62511
Putnam62523
Sandusky58720
Huron5727
Union5512
Scioto5287
Seneca49514
Ottawa47230
Muskingum4553
Preble44716
Holmes3999
Jefferson3424
Henry33715
Defiance33212
Champaign3143
Logan3143
Clinton30512
Perry3039
Fulton2991
Brown2923
Knox28915
Jackson2667
Washington26323
Morrow2622
Hardin25713
Ashland2484
Crawford2486
Coshocton23511
Fayette2346
Highland2313
Williams2163
Wyandot21512
Pike2040
Gallia19713
Meigs17711
Guernsey1748
Hocking1679
Carroll1527
Adams1374
Van Wert1283
Paulding1130
Monroe11018
Harrison643
Morgan500
Vinton483
Noble350
Unassigned00
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