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Sub-Zero Cold Continues This Week — And Snow Will Make For A Slippery Monday Commute Home

Snow is expected Monday afternoon, and it could feel as cold as 20 below zero later in the week.

A cyclist carries their bike through the snow as steam and the sun rise over Lake Michigan in sub-zero temperatures during the Arctic blast, as seen from the Museum Campus in Chicago on Feb. 7, 2021.
Colin Boyle/Block Club Chicago
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CHICAGO — More snow and below-zero cold will hit Chicago this week — but it will warm up a little bit.

Monday is expected to get as warm as 14 degrees, though the wind chill could make it feel as chilly as 2 degrees below zero during the day, according to the National Weather Service. Snow is expected in the afternoon, making for slipper conditions during the evening commute.

The snow will continue overnight, and temperatures will drop to a low of 4 degrees, though it could feel like 7 below zero. The city’s expected to get 1-2 inches more of snow.

Tuesday will be snow-free, mostly sunny and warmer, with an expected high temperature of 16 degrees, according to the weather service. There will be wind gusts up to 15 mph and it could feel as cold as 12 degrees below zero.

Tuesday night’s low temperature is expected to be 9 degrees, though it could feel like 1 degree below zero. The wind gusts will continue.

There’s another chance for snow Wednesday morning, and the skies will be mostly cloudy during the day, according to the National Weather Service. It’s expected to warm up to 21 degrees, though there will still be wind gusts up to 15 mph. Overnight, temperatures could dip to 11 degrees.

Thursday has another chance for snow, though mainly in the afternoon, according to the weather service. It’ll be a cloudy day with an expected high temperature of 20 degrees.

Overnight Thursday has a chance for more snow. The low temperature is expected to be 7 degrees, though it could feel as cold as 20 below zero.

Friday will be mostly cloudy with a high temperature near 16 degrees. There’s a slight chance of snow after 7 p.m. Overnight will see temperatures dip to 4 degrees, and it could feel as cold as 20 below zero again.

Staying Safe At Home

Fire Commissioner Richard Ford said Chicagoans should check on their vulnerable neighbors to ensure they stay warm. People should not use their ovens or stovetops to try to warm their houses, and the Fire Department also recommends against space heaters since they’re a fire risk, he said at a Wednesday news conference.

Ford encouraged everyone to make sure they have a working smoke detector and carbon monoxide detector.

And Chicagoans can help the Fire Department by shoveling snow away from fire hydrants, ensuring they’re easily accessible for firefighters in case of emergency, Ford said.

Buildings Commissioner Matt Beaudet also urged Chicagoans to ensure snow from recent storms isn’t covering up homes to their vents, like dryer vents, since that can create safety issues.


All cats and dogs must be brought indoors, even if they’re used to staying outside, according to Cook County Animal Control.

Walks should not last longer than 10 minutes during times there are sub-zero temperatures. Put foot coverings on your dogs if they will wear them, avoid walking them on salted sidewalks and wash their paws with warm water once home, according to the county angecy.

Protect Your Pipes

People can prevent their pipes from freezing by allowing the faucet to “dribble” water, Ford said. If your pipes do freeze, you can use a hair dryer to thaw them, but you should not use something with an open flame like a candle or torch, he said.

Heating Your Apartment

Beaudet said landlords are required to ensure their tenants’ units are heated during this time. Units must be at least 68 degrees during the day and 66 degrees overnight, Beaudet said.

If your landlord isn’t complying, you can file a report with 311. Landlords can be fined up to $1,000 per day per violation, Beaudet said.

Traveling Safely

Chicagoans who have to travel should keep a pair of gloves, a hat, water, flashlight, communication device, blankets and a cellphone charger in their car, said Josh Dennis, first deputy director of the city’s Office of Emergency Management and Communications.

Helping People Experiencing Homelessness

You can carry hand warmers, gift cards, cash, food and other supplies — like gloves and blankets — with you so you can give them to people who are homeless.

You can share the Chicago Coalition for the Homeless’ guide on where people can turn for help when the temperatures drop. It’s online here.

And you can reach out to local organizations the support people who are homeless, like the Night Ministry and other shelters.

Read more here.

Warming Centers

The city’s warming centers are open 9 a.m.-5 p.m. People at warming centers must wear masks and stay socially distant due to the coronavirus pandemic. Information about warming centers is available online or by calling 311.

The centers’ locations:

  • 1140 W. 79th St.
  • 10 S. Kedzie Ave.
  • 4314 S. Cottage Grove ave.
  • 845 W. Wilson Ave.
  • 8650 S. Commercial Ave.
  • 4312 W. North Ave.