Updated 3:30 p.m.
The National Weather Service has issued several advisories in advance of the winter weather that is forecast for Thursday afternoon and Friday.
Macon County is under a winter storm warning until 6 a.m. Friday. Three to five inches of snow and one tenth of an inch of ice is forecast for this area.
The following counties are under a winter weather advisory from 3 p.m. Thursday until 6 a.m. Friday: DeWitt, Piatt, Champaign, Vermilion, Macon, Moultrie, Douglas, Coles, Edgar and Shelby. In these areas, heavy precipitation of snow, sleet and freezing rain is expected between 6 p.m. and midnight Thursday. Snow accumulation of one to two inches is expected, with some areas along Interstate 72 expected to see three inches. Ice accumulation of one tenth to two tenths of an inch is expected, especially in the area of Mattoon northeast to Paris. Winds will gust up to 30 miles per hour, causing blowing and drifting snow.
Ford and Iroquois Counties are under a separate winter weather advisory from 6 p.m. Thursday until noon Friday. In these areas, snow will develop Thursday evening and continue into Friday morning, with periods of time where the snowfall rate will be one inch per hour. Accumulation of three to five inches of snow is expected. Ice accumulation will be less than one tenth of an inch. Winds will gust up to 30 miles per hour, causing blowing and drifting snow.
You should plan accordingly for this latest dose of winter weather. If you are travelling, plan for extra time to reach your destination, drive slowly, and expect low visibility and slick conditions. If you are staying put, make sure you have adequate supplies, including food, blankets, medical supplies and candles in case of power outages. Also make sure to check on pets and the elderly to make sure they are safe and comfortable.