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Afternoon Snow Will Slow Commute on North Side

By Alisa Hauser | February 7, 2013 2:50pm

CHICAGO — A flurry of heavy afternoon snow grounded 200 flights at O'Hare Airport Thursday afternoon.

Earlier, the National Weather Service cautioned that a rain-into-snow mixture could slow the afternoon commute as well.

A winter weather advisory is in effect until 9 p.m. tonight, and up to 4 inches of snow could accumulate on the city's North Side. O'Hare had received nearly an inch by 6 p.m.

Drivers should be cautious on slick roads with impaired visibilty, warned the National Weather Service.

The city's fleet of 199 snow trucks were spreading salt and preparing for the snowfall since 4 a.m., said Anne Sheahan, Department of Streets and Sanitation spokeswoman. The trucks would begin plowing as dropping temperatures turned freezing rain into snow.

Flights at O'Hare were experiencing delays of an average of 20 minutes as of 3 p.m., but operations were normal at Midway Airport.

A moderate-to-heavy snowfall did not stop Greenpeace workers Rico Sisney, 25, and Stephanie Bruno, 24, from soliciting donations on the 1500 block of North Milwaukee Avenue in Wicker Park Thursday.

"We're almost done with our shift," Sisney said. 

Bruno added, "It's better than the rain."