CHICAGO — The National Weather Service says a winter storm is heading to northeastern Illinois that could bring as much as 9 inches of snow to some areas.

A winter storm watch is in effect from Thursday evening through Friday evening. It includes Chicago and the suburbs, Rockford, Waukegan, Joliet and Ottawa into northwest Indiana.

Weather service forecasters warn of heavy snow, reduced visibility and difficult travel conditions, including during the morning commute Friday. Forecasters say total snow accumulation will be between 5 and 9 inches by the end of the day Friday. Temperatures are forecast in the 20s and low 30s.

The National Weather Service asks residents to monitor forecast updates, check their emergency supplies and consider postponing or altering travel plans.

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