Light snowfall blankets region
Illinois State Police said they responded to at least 16 crashes since 1 a.m. Thursday when snow started falling in the metro-east. At least one crash resulted in minor injuries, according to Trooper Calvin Dye Jr.
Dye said a 2010 Jeep slid off the road at Illinois 158 and Roachtown Road at 1:15 a.m. An infant riding in the vehicle with a man and a woman was taken to a nearby hospital as a precautionary measure.
Police said most crashes Thursday morning occurred on Interstate 55 between mile posts 23 and 37. No other injuries were reported in the weather-related accidents.
While no major traffic incidents had been reported early in the morning due to the snow, Dye said commuters still needed to be alert and drive slowly in the freezing temperatures.
Snow continued throughout the morning hours across the region, but hourly precipitation projections indicated the chance for snow would lessen substantially this afternoon. The chance for snow was 45 percent in the 11 a.m. hour, according to the Weather Channel, but would drop to 15 percent or less in the afternoon and evening hours.
Skies will become partly cloudy Friday with a high reaching only 18, with sunny skies and slightly warmer temperatures forecast for the weekend. The high Saturday should reach 27 Saturday and 31 on Sunday, and then into the low 40s on Monday.
By noon, major highways in Southern Illinois were mostly clear, according to the Illinois Department of Transportation. Some side roads were still partly covered with snow.
IDOT District 8, based in Collinsville, said in a tweet that 160 trucks were working in 11 counties to clear the snow at around 5 a.m.
The Metro transit system said on Twitter that some of its buses were experiencing minor delays by 7 a.m. due to traffic, but also said its MetroLink was operating on time with no delays.
The forecast for the metro-east from the National Weather Service:
Thursday...Scattered snow showers, mainly before 1 p.m., then occasional flurries after 3 p.m. Cloudy, with a high near 21. Northwest wind 7 to 9 mph. Chance of precipitation is 50 percent.
Thursday night...Cloudy during the early evening, then gradual clearing, with a low around 9. Northwest wind around 7 mph.
Friday...Mostly sunny and cold, with a high near 19. Northwest wind 5 to 7 mph.
Friday night...Mostly clear, with a low around 8. Light and variable wind.
Saturday...Sunny, with a high near 28. Calm wind becoming west 5 to 7 mph in the morning.
Saturday night...Mostly clear, with a low around 9.
Sunday...Sunny, with a high near 25.
Sunday night...Partly cloudy, with a low around 18.
Monday...Partly sunny, with a high near 39.
Monday night...A chance of rain and snow between midnight and 2 a.m., then a chance of rain after 2 a.m. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 34. Chance of precipitation is 40 percent.
Tuesday...A 50 percent chance of rain. Cloudy, with a high near 52.
Tuesday night...Rain and snow likely. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 33. Chance of precipitation is 60 percent.
Wednesday...Partly sunny, with a high near 42.