Weather Alert: Dangerous Driving Conditions As 5.5 Million Illinoisans Head Out For Holiday Travel
The National Weather Service Chicago is warning Kane County area drivers of dangerous conditions Friday, when many people will be hitting the roads for holiday travel.
According to the NWS-C Special Weather Statement, a period of freezing drizzle is possible tonight (Thursday, Dec. 21, 2017) with effects lasting into Friday morning.
The area potential is mainly for areas along I-88 as well as portions of the Interstate 39 and I-90 corridors.
“Light rain or drizzle, mixed with patchy light snow at times, is expected to begin across far northern Illinois late today into this evening,” the statement says as of 11 a.m. “After dark, temperatures will very gradually inch downward to near or just below freezing late in the evening into overnight.”
Those surfaces that also cool to freezing could see a light glaze of ice, which for any untreated roadways would result in hazardous travel conditions.
“If this were to occur, some of the slick conditions would likely linger into early Friday morning,” the statement says.
Continue to monitor the forecast on the National Weather Service Chicago website through today, especially if traveling tonight or Friday morning through far northern Illinois.
Huge Mess Expected on Highways
According to AAA Chicago, the busiest travel time on the roads will be from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. today (Thursday).
And people will be hitting the roads in record numbers.
In Illinois, more 5.5 million people will be traveling for the holiday weekend, which is a 2.3 percent increase from 2016. Of those travelers, 5.1 million will be driving (up 2.3 percent from 2016) and 303,000 will be flying to their destination (a 3.1 percent increase from 2016).
Gas prices across Illinois are on average $2.51, down from $2.72 last month and up from $2.28 a year ago.
Nationally, AAA forecasts 107.3 million Americans will take to planes, trains, automobiles and other modes of transportation during the year-end holiday period from Saturday, Dec. 23 through Monday, Jan. 1. This will be the highest year-end travel volume on record and a 3.1 percent increase in travel volume compared with last year.