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updated: 2/17/2014 10:48 PM

Monday's snow creates a mess; floods next?

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  • A Vernon Hills Public Works snowplow clears Deerpath Road before rush hour traffic Monday. Snow fell throughout the day in Lake County.

       A Vernon Hills Public Works snowplow clears Deerpath Road before rush hour traffic Monday. Snow fell throughout the day in Lake County.
    Gilbert R. Boucher II | Staff Photographer

  • Sara Jensen of Mundelein cleans off her car after leaving work Monday afternoon from the Centre Club in Libertyville.

       Sara Jensen of Mundelein cleans off her car after leaving work Monday afternoon from the Centre Club in Libertyville.
    Paul Valade | Staff Photographer

 
 

Snow Monday created a slow, messy commute home and delays for travelers as the additional snowfall earned this winter the title of fifth-snowiest in recent history, meteorologists said.

A snowfall that dumped another 5 to 7 inches throughout the area tapered off before 9 p.m. Monday, said meteorologist Eric Lenning with the National Weather Service.

The service reported 5.6 inches of snow in Geneva, 6.2 in Bartlett, 5.5 in Buffalo Grove, 4.6 in Oak Brook, 3.9 in Cary, 6.2 in Elburn and 5.2 in Lisle. At the weather service headquarters in Romeoville, 7.6 inches were recorded.

As the fifth-snowiest winter since 1884, 66.8 inches of snow has fallen at O'Hare International Airport, the official Chicago recording site for the National Weather Service.

O'Hare was also the site of more than 800 canceled flights Monday and delays of an hour or more in the evening. At Midway, 270 flights were canceled.

Metra reported some delays throughout the evening commute, escalated on the Union Pacific Northwest Line by a train that crashed into a stalled car at River Road in Des Plaines.

About 4 p.m., a 2005 Ford Taurus trying to make a left-hand turn from westbound Miner Street onto River Road got stuck in slush and snow on the tracks, Des Plaines Sgt. Jeff Rotkvich said.

The female driver's tires began slipping and the car eventually stalled out on the tracks, he said.

Train 623 struck the front end of her vehicle, doing extensive damage but not injuring the driver, he said. The driver was not cited, Rotkvich said.

"We're just lucky that she wasn't a fatal," he said. "There's been people sliding all over the place."

The train began moving again within the hour, he said.

At the DuPage Airport in West Chicago, a small plane skidded off the runway in near-white-out conditions shortly after 2 p.m. Seven passengers aboard the plane were uninjured, said West Chicago Fire Department Deputy Chief Joe Buenrostro.

"They were taking off and due to weather conditions they slid off the runway there," he said. "The runways had snow and a little bit of ice on them."

Police and fire officials throughout the suburbs reported some typical weather-related fender benders but no major crashes during rush hour.

An increase in temperatures predicted for later in the week raises the potential for flooding once snow begins to melt, meteorologists said.

"It's not really going to have anywhere to go," Lenning said. "The ground is going to be frozen still and cause some rivers to go up a little bit."

Tuesday's high temperatures could reach into the upper 30s. Wednesday night and into Thursday, rain is expected.

There are an additional 1 to 4 inches of liquid trapped in the snow pack that will contribute to flooding concerns, Lenning said.

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