Local

Strong winds, drifting lead to road closures in McHenry County

Konstantin Haralampopoulos shovels the snow from his sidewalk Tuesday in Crystal Lake. "I'm like a machine," he said of the physical work, noting that "if it's not snow, it's mowing the lawn or it's pool maintenance."
Konstantin Haralampopoulos shovels the snow from his sidewalk Tuesday in Crystal Lake. "I'm like a machine," he said of the physical work, noting that "if it's not snow, it's mowing the lawn or it's pool maintenance."

Wintry weather conditions and drifting snow led to multiple road closures Tuesday night around McHenry County.

The National Weather Service issued a winter weather advisory for Lake and McHenry counties Tuesday, which remained in effect until 3 a.m. Wednesday.

Heavy winds and snow showers developed in the afternoon and continued into the night.

Strong west winds were expected to gust to between 40 and 50 mph at times.

Poor conditions forced road closures in McHenry and the Huntley area.

The McHenry Police Department issued a Nixle alert about 6 p.m. Tuesday warning residents to avoid Route 120 between Ridge and Ringwood roads “due to weather.”

The road reopened about 6:40 p.m., according to a second alert.

“Please make all [efforts] to stay in tonight, as the roadways are extremely slippery,” the second alert read.

The Gilberts Police Department closed Huntley-Dundee Road near Kreutzer Road about 8:30 p.m. because of drifting snow, according to a Nixle alert from the Huntley Police Department.

Route 47 between Ackman and Conley roads in Huntley was closed about 9:40 p.m. because of drifting snow and crashes, according to a separate Nixle alert from Huntley police.

“There’s a pretty strong surface low that’s tracking over the area, bringing strong winds,” said Amy Seeley, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Romeoville. “The wind is the story.”

The agency encouraged motorists to drive with caution as wind and snow reduced visibility on roads.

Meteorologist Ben Deubelbeiss said he was concerned that trees and power lines coated with ice from Tuesday morning could fall.

“They’re already weighed down and could topple,” he said. “We’ve been in a really active pattern in the last few weeks with precipitation.”

He said he does not expect any prolonged stretches of dry weather anytime soon.

“We have another cold front coming,” he said. “It’s another chance for snow to the area, along with cold air and strong winds.”

The agency issued an excessive cold watch for Friday and Saturday morning.

Highs are predicted to be in the mid 20s Friday and Saturday.

Tom Dominquez, a spokesman for ComEd, said the company was preparing for power outages.

“We’re always on alert when there’s icy rain and ice coupled with high winds,” he said, adding that 400 crews were prepared to respond to issues Tuesday night and Wednesday morning.

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