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Chicago Snow Storm 2013: Over 1,100 Flights Canceled Amid Biggest Storm Since 2011 Blizzaster

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AP
AP

Updated story

It was a snowy day in Chicago Tuesday -- the snowiest since 2011's blizzaster, in fact.

Before the snow even started coming down Tuesday morning, the city's airports have already canceled almost 1,000 flights ahead of snowfall that picked up in intensity in the late morning and continued through the afternoon and into the early evening hours.

As of 4 p.m. Tuesday, 6 inches of snow fell at O'Hare International Airport and 6.1 at Midway Airport. Snowfall totals were higher elsewhere, such as the 8.5 inches that have fallen in DeKalb.

By Wednesday morning, 9.2 inches of snow fell at O'Hare, according to NBC Chicago, almost doubling the average snowfall total for all of March in Chicago -- 5.6 inches -- in one day.

Ahead of the storm, O'Hare International Airport canceled more than 770 flights as of 8 a.m. At Midway Airport, 215 flights have been canceled, the Tribune previously reported. By 1 p.m., 1,140 flights were canceled, according to the Associated Press, and airlines urged their customers to check their flight statuses before leaving for the airport.

A winter storm warning went into effect for the Chicago area beginning at 9 a.m. Tuesday and continued through midnight, ABC Chicago reports, making for a difficult and slow evening commute on the area's roadways while snow continued to fall at a rate of an inch per hour at some times after noon. As WGN reports, many spinouts and crashes were reported in the area.

"Once the snow begins, it's most likely not going to stop," ABC meteorologist Tracy Butler said earlier Tuesday. "Both rush hours would be impacted, but the afternoon/evening commute will be much worse."

The commute

According to DNAinfo Chicago, the Illinois Tollway's full 182-plow fleet was already deployed early Tuesday, while the city has sent out more than 284 plows to tackle the snow which, when accompanied with brisk winds gusting up to 30 mph, was drastically reducing visibility.

Many area schools closed their doors Tuesday -- follow this link for an updated list of impacted schools and businesses.

The city's biggest snowstorm ahead of Tuesday's snowfall this season was the 5.4 inches of snow that fell Feb. 26-27, according to AccuWeather.

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