IDOT warns: Stay off roads in northern Illinois

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State officials say the road conditions are so dangerous that motorists should simply stay off the roads in northern Illinois.

“Currently, the majority of roads in the Northern part of the state are snow and ice covered with wind gusts as high as 30 mph, creating whiteout conditions,” said a statement from the Illinois Department of Transportation on Monday morning, January 27, 2014.

Conditions improved throughout the day, but roads continued to have at least patchy ice on them later Monday.

Whiteside County authorities asked motorists to refrain from unnecessary travel until Tuesday morning, saying wind was making it difficult for their crews to clear ice and snow from roads there.

“In addition to clearing snow and ice from roads and bridges, IDOT has emergency crews on the job assisting law enforcement and emergency personnel from other state agencies to help remove vehicles from ditches and rescue stranded motorists,” said Illinois Transportation Secretary Ann Schneider.

IDOT had more than 600 trucks and more than 750 workers assigned to remove snow and ice from state highways.

Drivers were advised to travel only when absolutely necessary.  If you become stranded in Illinois, dial *999 for roadway assistance in case of emergency.

The state’s website dedicated to winter weather driving conditions indicated roads along and north of Interstate 80 were partially to completely snow and ice covered, with the worst conditions reported in north-central Illinois.