Winter Storm Draco didn’t hit the Chicago area as hard as expected, as most suburbs experienced only a light dusting of snow on the first official day of winter.
AccuWeather senior meteorologist Tom Kines said the biggest bust was probably in the western suburbs, where snowfall didn’t come close to the four to six inches that were predicted.
But outlying counties, like Boone and Stevenson, along with neighboring states, including Iowa and Wisconsin, got anywhere from two inches to almost a foot and a half of snow.
“It was just a matter of trying to figure out where exactly that line was going to be,” he said of predicting which areas would get the most snow. “If you’re off by 25 or 40 miles on that line, it makes a big difference.”
Measuring the small amount of snow in the Chicago area — such as the 0.2 inches recorded at O’Hare shortly after midnight — also isn’t an easy task, Kines said.
“Snow is very tough to measure because of the wind,” he said, adding that wind gusts between 50 and 60 miles per hour were recorded throughout the suburbs overnight.
Rainfall during the storm averaged around 1.35 inches in the Chicago area, Kines said.
According to the Chicago Department of Aviation, as of 10:45 a.m. Friday morning there were no significant delays at O’Hare. However, about 40 flights were canceled for various reasons. At Midway, there are about two dozen delays of 30 minutes or more, but no cancellations.
Although it may come as a disappointment for some, Kines said, the weather for the weekend and into early next week is “looking pretty good,” with sunshine and temperatures in the low 30s.
“If you don’t have any snow today, it’s going to be tough to get some by the time Christmas rolls around,” he said, joking that the only hope for a White Christmas is for strong winds to push Wisconsin’s snow down to the suburbs.Copyright © 2013 Paddock Publications, Inc. All rights reserved.