The National Weather Services has issued a Winter Storm Warning from noon on Thursday, December 22nd through 6am on Saturday, December 24th, calling for the possibility of snow and blizzard like conditions. Total snow accumulation is expected to be between 2-5 inches with wind gusts as high as 50 mph. Wind chill values of 25 to 35 below zero are also expected. The impact of this storm may result in white out conditions with zero visibility at times, making travel extremely difficult. Roads will likely quickly become covered in ice as temperatures rapidly fall Thursday afternoon.
If you must travel, please use caution while driving. City snow removal crews will be working around the clock to clean and maintain City streets. Due to the potential for hazardous driving conditions, refuse pick up will begin at 5am on Thursday, December 22nd. Residents with Thursday pickup days should plan accordingly. Refuse pickup on Friday is expected to operate as normal.
Residents can assist City crews by keeping fire hydrants free of snow piles, and not blowing or shoveling snow onto City streets. Also, please remember not to park on City streets for eight hours following a snowfall of 2” or more. The Elmhurst Police Department will not allow for any overnight street parking on Thursday evening.
Power outages will also be possible as a result of strong wind gusts. ComEd is monitoring the forecasted weather warning. Residents are advised to report any power outages directly to ComEd using the following methods:
· Text OUT to 26633 (COMED) to report their outage and receive restoration information
· Call 1-800 EDISON1 (1-800-334-7661)
· Report outages via the website at ComEd.com/Report or check the progress of outage restoration
· Use the ComEd App to report their outages
· Additionally, always stay clear of downed power lines and call 911 if you feel there is immediate danger. 911 should not be used to call in power outage
Dangerously cold wind chills as low as 25 to 35 below zero are likely Thursday night through Friday night. Wind chills of this magnitude can cause frostbite on exposed skin in as little as 20 minutes. Residents are encouraged to remain safe indoors and to use City warming centers if needed. The Elmhurst Police Station, 125 E. First St., and Elmhurst Public Library, 125 S. Prospect Ave., are two official warming center locations recognized by DuPage County. The police station lobby is open 24/7 while the library is available as a warming center during normal operating hours.
Without proper precaution, freezing temperatures can cause serious plumbing problems. Water pipes, plastic and copper, can crack and burst if the water within freezes. Residents should also take preventative measures to avoid freezing pipes by leaving faucets that share an exterior wall on, with a small pencil-size stream running. Also be sure to open cabinet doors to expose pipes to warm air. If pipes freeze, use the master shut-off valve to cut the water flow to the home immediately and call a licensed plumber. Never try to thaw a pipe with a torch or any kind of open flame.
Residents are urged to continue monitoring weather conditions and alerts. A full list of county warming centers can be found at www.dupageco.org. The latest road conditions can be found on www.gettingaroundillinois.com.