Forecast: Snow, wintry mix to bring unsafe driving conditions Tuesday

'Dangerous' and 'brutal' cold aimed at Upper Midwest and Great Lakes

Wind, frigid temps early to mid-week

The Chicago Department of Aviation said about 790 flights were canceled at O'Hare International Airport and about 220 were canceled at Midway International Airport as of Monday morning. Later in the week, the windchill is expected to drop as low as 41 degrees below zero, according to the National Weather Service.

Subzero temperatures will begin Tuesday but Wednesday is expected to be the worst. Hundreds of MI schools were closed Tuesday, including in Detroit, while Chicago Public Schools canceled Wednesday classes because of the anticipated cold snap.

The entirety of Minnesota and Wisconsin and much of northern IL is expected to remain below zero for all of Wednesday.

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MI has already gotten 16 inches of snow, and Wisconsin 15 inches!

"A winter weather advisory has been issued Tuesday for the mountains and northern foothills, where the cold air and moisture will likely have better luck over-lapping".

On Tuesday night, widespread lows under 30 below zero will grip much of North Dakota, eastern South Dakota and Minnesota. In Minneapolis, the storm system will have to dig deeper; that city once faced a record cold of -35 degrees. Dangerously cold weekend weather will be followed by a storm that could leave more than 6 inches of snow on the ground before an arctic blast brings a three-day stretch "of potentially life-threatening cold" to the Chicago area, according to the National Weather Service.

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Even snowplow drivers are having trouble keeping up with conditions Monday. Wind chills in northern IL could fall to negative 55 degrees, which the National Weather Service called "possibly life-threatening".

In Wisconsin, courthouses and most offices are closed in Milwaukee, Waukesha, Columbia and Washington counties. The largest public school districts in Wisconsin and Minnesota also were among those closed, including districts in Milwaukee and St. Paul. More than 2,000 flights involving USA airports are canceled for Tuesday and Wednesday, including more than 1,000 in and out of Chicago airports, according to FlightAware.com.

In Minneapolis, charitable groups that operate warming places and shelters were expanding hours and capacity "as they do whenever unsafe extreme temperature events occur", said Hennepin County Emergency Management Director Eric Waage.

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The Weather Service is calling for 6 to 12 inches of total snow accumulations. The worst conditions will hit North Dakota to northern IL, including Chicago. "Atlanta could even receive a coating to an inch of snow", one local weatherman predicted, giving Georgia students an official "snow day" later in the week - something they rarely experience.

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