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Midway socked with nearly 18 inches of snow; O’Hare gets 7.5 inches

A huge snowstorm buried parts of the Chicago area Monday. Forecasters are expecting another half-inch Tuesday.

Melanie Maeda shovels her walkway Tuesday morning in Portage Park.
Melanie Maeda shovels her walkway Tuesday morning in Portage Park.
Stefano Esposito/Sun-Times

Another snowstorm tore through Chicago overnight, leaving parts of the city under more than a foot of new snowfall.

But the storm hit some neighborhoods more heavily than others.

Midway Airport recorded 17.7 inches by Tuesday morning, while less than half of that fell at O’Hare Airport, which got 7.5 inches, according to the National Weather Service.

The highest Chicago-area total was 18.6 inches of snow in the West Ridge neighborhood. A close second was 18.2 inches of snow in west suburban Oak Park. Next was Evanston, with 18 inches.

The seasonal snowfall in Chicago is now well above normal. About 44.2 inches of snow have fallen at O’Hare this season, which is 18 inches higher than the average for this time of year, according to Weather Service meteorologist Jake Petr.

What’s more, the current seasonal snowfall has already blown past the end-of-season average of 36.3 inches, he said. Notably, Chicago started off winter with below-average snowfall, with only 8.6 inches before Jan. 25, more than 9 inches below average.

“We were below normal through most of January, and then we started getting these rounds of snow,” Petr said. “Winter sometimes has a mind of its own.”

Monday’s winter storm was the third snowfall above 6 inches since January 25, according to the weather service. Added together, the snow depth was 21 inches at O’Hare on Tuesday and 2 feet at Midway.

Chicago also tied a 2018 record for experiencing nine consecutive days of snowfall at O’Hare, the city’s official weather station, the weather service said.

While the snow blew past averages, temperatures remained at bone-chilling levels. Monday peaked at 12 degrees and fell to 1 degree overnight, with windchills at minus 12 degrees, forecasters said.

Tuesday’s high was expected to be 17 degrees. Wind gusts up to 20 miles an hour Tuesday could make it feel like minus 8 degrees.

The snowstorm also bogged down travelers and commuters. State police said they responded to six crashes Tuesday morning, with injuries reported in three of them. The Chicago Transit Agency also reported several train suspensions Tuesday.

As of 7 a.m. Tuesday, O’Hare reported 82 flight cancellations while Midway Airport reported 73, according to the Chicago Department of Aviation.

Michael Svabek tries to dig out a car Tuesday after parts of Chicago were buried under about 18 inches of snow.
Michael Svabek tries to dig out a car Tuesday after parts of Chicago were buried under about 18 inches of snow.
Pat Nabong/Sun-Times
People and their pets resorted to walking in the middle of the street Tuesday because sidewalks were covered with up to 18 inches of snow.
People and their pets resorted to walking in the middle of the street Tuesday because sidewalks were covered with up to 18 inches of snow.
Pat Nabong/Sun-Times