(12:00PM - 2/4/19) Model guidance continues to come in showing an ice event across portions of Northern and Central Illinois Tuesday afternoon into Wednesday morning.
A disturbance ejecting out across the region will aid in the development of precipitation to our west, across Iowa and Missouri Tuesday. This activity will spread into portions of Northwest and Western Illinois by mid-late afternoon Tuesday. With below freezing temperatures at the surface and a wedge of "mild" air aloft, precip is expected to fall in the form of freezing rain. This will spread across all of Northern and portions of Central Illinois into the evening and overnight. As time goes on and some "warming" occurs, some of the freezing rain will turn to plain rain across portions of Central Illinois on up into the south side of the Chicago metro. Freezing rain and rain will end for affected areas Wednesday morning. Additionally, some elevated instability will be present, which will lead to the chance of some isolated thunderstorms...yes, freezing rain producing thunderstorms.
It is possible some precip will be more of a mix (snow/sleet/ice) across far Northwest Illinois, where the wedge of "mild" air aloft will be much more narrow.
As of now it looks like the axis for highest ice accumulation will run SW-NE, from the Quad Cities area on up into Northeast Illinois. Within this axis, upwards of around 0.25" ice accumulation may occur. This main axis has been shifted a bit north from the previous update.
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