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Thunderstorms Could Bring Damaging Winds, Heavy Rain to Chicago Area Wednesday

Thunderstorms, some of which threaten to bring damaging wind gusts, are expected in parts of the Chicago area as heavy rainfall could make for a difficult afternoon and evening commute for many. While much of the metro area likely won’t see severe weather, strong winds with gusts of up to 50 mph are possible as storms make their way across northern Illinois with between 1 and 2 inches of rain expected. The National Weather Service has issued a wind advisory for southern portions of the Chicago area and parts of northwest Indiana. The advisory will take effect at 9 a.m. Wednesday in Kankakee County in Illinois, as well as in Newton and Jasper counties in Indiana. That advisory will expire at 9 p.m. Wednesday. According to the Storm Prediction Center, those three counties, along with parts of LaSalle and Grundy counties in Illinois, are under a “marginal” risk for severe weather on Wednesday, with showers and thunderstorms expected to hit their crescendo in the afternoon hours. Winds could cause tree branches to snap and for loose objects to blow around outdoors, and heavy rains could cause some ponding on area roadways or even flash flooding in low-lying areas. Elsewhere in the area, rain is expected on Wednesday, with up to 2 inches possible. The rain will likely become heavy at times, particularly during the evening commute, with reduced visibility and some ponding expected on roadways. Temperatures will push back into the 60s as part of a brief warm-up during the storms. Unfortunately, that warm-up will not last, and cooler temperatures could cause rain showers to transition to snow Thursday morning and afternoon, according to forecast models. Highs will likely only reach into the low-40s on Thursday, and will slowly warm back up as conditions begin to clear heading into the weekend. Stay tuned to the NBC 5 Storm Team for all the latest information on the forecast.

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