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Road crews ready for expected Saturday snowfall

Published: Friday, Jan. 31, 2014 3:20 p.m. CDT • Updated: Saturday, Feb. 1, 2014 3:09 p.m. CDT
(Sarah Nader –
David Sorenson of Crystal Lake walks past a mural Friday outside Lucky Break Bicycles on Dole Avenue in Crystal Lake. A winter storm warning is in effect from 9 p.m. until 6 p.m. Saturday, according to the National Weather Service. McHenry County can expect 5 to 8 inches of snow with the southern portion of the county taking the hardest hit.

CRYSTAL LAKE – The more snow that falls, the better Mark DeVries gets at planning the cleanup.

By 4 p.m. Friday, the maintenance superintendent at the McHenry County Division of Transportation had his plans laid out for Saturday, when as much as 8 inches of snow could fall by the end of the day.

Friday’s forecast changed throughout the day, going from an expected snowfall start between 9 and 10 p.m. to after midnight. Because DeVries knew the snow would likely be heaviest between 6 a.m. and noon Saturday, he said trucks would be deployed at 4 a.m. Saturday and roads should hold up fine until then.

“We’ve been out so much that the roads are still treated,” DeVries said. “We’ll be OK until about 4 a.m. when the snow starts to pick up.”

Still, residents are encouraged to avoid traveling until Saturday afternoon when the snow will taper off and plows can remove snow that may still outpace the early cleanup effort because of how fast it is expected to fall.

McHenry County will remain in a winter storm warning until 6 p.m. Saturday as another wave of severe weather passes through.

Meteorologist Gino Izzi said forecasts call for about 8 inches of snow Friday and Saturday, with the southern portion of the county taking the hardest hit.

“A pretty wide range of snowfall is still possible but it doesn’t look like it will get to 10 inches,” Izzi said. “It looks like the heaviest snow will be in south part of the county.”

Previous estimates had forecasted as much as 10 inches of snow for the area.

The peak snowfall will occur early Saturday morning, tapering off in the afternoon, Izzi said. County residents should have a break from the snow Saturday night through Monday, but more is expected Tuesday and Wednesday.

High winds and drifting snow caused travel issues earlier in the week, but gusts were only expected to reach about 10 mph Friday night. The wind was expected to get stronger early Saturday with gusts reaching 20 mph.

Temperatures will remain low, with a high of 25 degrees Saturday and 13 degrees Sunday, before falling to single digits next week.

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