Chicago in the bullseye as heavy winter storms pummel Midwest, Great Lakes

Chicago in the bullseye as heavy winter storms pummel Midwest, Great Lakes

Chicago in the bullseye as heavy winter storms pummel Midwest, Great Lakes

The forecast called for a tapering off of the initial storm Saturday morning, with another winter storm poised to arrive Saturday night, bringing 3 to 5 more inches of snow through Sunday.

Michigan State Police said about 50 vehicles were involved in the Friday afternoon pileup in the highway's eastbound lanes just east of Kalamazoo.

The National Weather Service said the significant winter storms threatened heavy snow, strong winds and risky travel from the northern Rockies to the Northern Plains and the upper Midwest through Sunday in some parts.

The Chicago Department of Aviation reports Friday morning that about 550 flights were canceled at Chicago's O'Hare International Airport and about 230 flights were canceled at Chicago's Midway Airport.

Eight inches was reported in parts of northern IL and up to 6 inches in the Chicago area.

Almost 1,000 flights were delayed and another 1,500 canceled at Detroit and Chicago airports.

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The National Weather Service said the system could drop up to 14 inches (36 cm) of snow in some areas.

Friday's winter snow storm caused more than 400 flights to be canceled or delayed. Eight inches was reported in parts of northern IL and up to about 6 inches was reported the Chicago area.

Airfield and maintenance crews began to remove snow overnight and airport officials say they'll continue working non-stop clearing the runways throughout the evening. As of 9:30 a.m., more than 740 flights have been cancelled on Friday at O'Hare, and more than 280 have been cancelled on Friday at Midway. People should stay off the roads if possible, but if they drive they should expect delays and hazardous conditions.

City officials announced school closures in Chicago, Detroit and Milwaukee because of the weather.

United Airlines said on Twitter that waivers were in effect for snow-hit areas this week, allowing travelers to change flights without charges.

Weather service meteorologist Charles Mott said the morning rush in Chicago "is gonna be trouble". Schools across MI also cancelled classes.

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