Closings: Schools, churches, day-cares and businesses

Illinois preparing for second winter wallop within a week

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) _ Illinoisans are beginning to brace themselves for a storm the National Weather Service says could bring a half-foot of snow to parts of the state.

National Weather Service forecasters say the storm is expected to start Friday afternoon. Total snow accumulations of 4 to 6 inches are possible in northern and central Illinois through Saturday, with drifting and blowing snow expected thanks to 30 mph wind gusts. Accumulations from lake-effect snow are likely along Lake Michigan.

Forecasters say it’s a complex weather system and accumulation predictions could change. The storm is due a week after parts of Illinois received double-digit snow accumulations.

The (Champaign) News-Gazette reports crews at the University of Illinois at the Urbana-Champaign campus were meeting to gear up for the weekend storm and keep pace with changing forecasts.

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