CHICAGO (WLS) —
Drivers were advised to take caution and allow extra travel time during the Thursday morning commute. There were intense downpours as thunderstorms moved across the Chicago area, making it hard to see and hard to stop.
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Two people were injured, one critically, in a three-car crash early Thursday morning on the inbound Edens Expressway in north suburban Skokie.
A driver lost control of their vehicle on southbound I-94 near Church Street around 4:54 a.m. The pavement was wet and the car spun out, Illinois State Police said.
While that vehicle was still spinning, it was hit by a second car. The driver of a third vehicle saw the collision, but was not able to stop in time. That car hit the second vehicle.
At least two of the vehicles sustained heavy damage. Authorities had to extricate at least one of the drivers from their vehicle.
The driver of the first vehicle was transported to a hospital with “serious, life-threatening” injuries. State police said that person’s condition was upgraded to critical at the hospital and the patient underwent surgery.
The driver of the second vehicle was also transported to a hospital, but that person’s injuries were not life-threatening.
The ages and genders of both drivers were not immediately known. ISP did not release details on whether the third driver was hurt in the crash.
All lanes of the inbound Edens and two outbound lanes were temporarily closed for crash cleanup. One inbound lane and both outbound lanes eventually reopened, but traffic was backed up to at least the Tri-State spur around 6:30 a.m.
The National Weather Service has issued a flood warning and a flood advisory for portions of the Chicago area after severe thunderstorms moved into the region overnight.
A flood advisory is in effect until 9:15 a.m. for parts of Cook, Kendall and DuPage counties, as well as southern Lake County, northern Will County, southeastern Kane County and northwestern Lake County in Indiana, the weather service said.
As of 7:45 a.m., 2.73 inches of rainfall had been recorded near Harvard and McHenry over the past 24 hours, according to the weather service. Elgin saw 1.12 inches of rainfall in the same period, while 1.14 inches were reported in Lake Zurich.
A flood warning will also remain in effect through Sunday for the Des Plaines River, which saw record flood levels last week. The flood warning covers the Des Plaines River near Gurnee, Russell and Lincolnshire in Lake County and the Des Plaines River near Des Plaines in Cook County, as well as the Fox River at Algonquin Tailwater in Kane and McHenry counties.
Starting Thursday, people affected by all the flooding will have a new center to help them get back on their feet.
A disaster flood resource center is scheduled to open at the old Garden Fresh location in north suburban Round Lake Beach.
Counselors will be there, as well as officials who can help people find housing and insurance information. The center will be open through the weekend.
Part of a building came tumbling down onto parked cars in Chicago’s Pilsen neighborhood overnight. Nearly 100 bricks fell off the abandoned Western Shade Cloth Company building in the 2400-block of South Jefferson Street. Two cars sustained minor damage, but a third car’s roof caved in and its hood and windows were badly damaged.
The good news is no one was inside the cars when the bricks came down.
“Thankfully, as far as we know, nobody was around. Nobody was in the cars. I wasn’t in the car. I think my car got the worst damage. The roof is completely smashed. But thankfully I wasn’t in the car, so we’re all safe. No injuries as of yet,” said Megan Swierenga, whose car was damaged.
As of 4:25 a.m., about 10,000 ComEd customers were without power in the Chicago area. About 7,500 of those customers were in ComEd’s west region.
Although Thursday morning’s storms produced heavy rain and lightning, there was no hail and no strong winds. The rain is expected to wind down between 9 and 10 a.m. After a break, the storms are expected to develop again starting around 3 p.m. High temperatures will be around 90 degrees.
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(Source: Sun-Times Media Wire – Copyright Chicago Sun-Times 2017.)
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