Tornadoes, Rain Strike Chicagoland: Causing Damage and Disrupting Flights

Tornadoes touched down in the Chicagoland area near O’Hare International Airport and Midway on Wednesday, disrupting hundreds of flights and forcing people to take shelter. There were others reported throughout the area, punctuating a Wednesday replete with heavy rains, flooding and strong-to-severe thunderstorms.

The National Weather Service issued two tornado warnings for Chicago Wednesday evening. The threat was enough to set off sirens at locations within the city. Eight tornadoes in all were reported, along with a funnel cloud, according to ABC-7.

Rainfall slammed the region, as counties were either under a flood watch or flood warning on Wednesday. City officials also advised residents to “not use extra water to shower, do laundry or dishes while experiencing storm conditions” to help move water into the city’s wastewater system.

“As our climate changes and we see heavier rain events in compressed periods of time, it is difficult for our sewer system to move the water efficiently. While it may present a temporary inconvenience, it is better for water to pool on the street than in residents’ basements,” read the City of Chicago’s statement.

The storms and tornadoes eventually passed, and the skies cleared late Wednesday. However, thousands in the region were without power. Wednesday’s weather events inflicted damage to homes, businesses and cars.

The City of Chicago urges motorists to use caution, avoid driving through standing water on streets, viaducts and low-lying areas, and stay informed of weather conditions.

Residents can call 3-1-1, visit or use the CHI311 app to report water in your basement, standing water in the street or viaduct flooding.

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