Cook County Prepares for Ice Storm

Officials urge residents to be cautious of downed tree limbs and power lines

Cook County is under an ice storm warning beginning at 6 p.m. this evening. The County’s Department of Homeland Security and Emergency Management (DHSEM) and Department of Transportation and Highways (DoTH) urge residents to use extreme caution through the duration of the storm.

DHSEM has activated the County’s Emergency Operations Center to monitor conditions around the County and is ready to provide area municipalities as well as utilities with the resources needed to ensure residents’ safety. DoTH crews will be out on the more than 500 miles of County roadways to apply deicing treatments as soon as conditions warrant.  

Travel will be hazardous throughout this storm. Residents should be prepared for downed tree limbs and power lines. DHSEM and DoTH recommend residents call police and their utility company’s emergency line immediately if a downed power line is spotted. 

County officials warn residents not to touch anything a power line is in contact with including tree branches and vehicles. If a power line falls on your vehicle, stay inside your vehicle and do not touch any part of the metal frame.

If residents must travel, they are advised to keep the following items in their vehicles in case of emergency:

  • Windshield scraper and small broom 
  • Road salt, sand or cat litter for traction 
  • Flashlight with extra batteries 
  • Water and snack food, including energy bars 
  • Extra hats, socks and mittens 
  • First aid kit with pocket knife 
  • Blankets or sleeping bag 
  • Jumper cables 
  • Emergency flares and reflectors 
  • Fluorescent distress flag and whistle to attract attention 
  • Cell phone adapter to plug into lighter

The County also reminds residents to bring their pets indoors during the storm, even if they’re acclimated to outdoor living.