Blizzard hits southern Illinois


CARBONDALE, Ill. (AP) -- A gusty winter storm has slammed into southern Illinois, forcing the closures of courthouses and leaving roads covered in snow and ice.


The National Weather Service says 4 inches to a foot of snow fell on the region as of Wednesday morning, with the heaviest amounts reported from Anna in Union County northeast to Harrisburg.


As much as 3 more inches were expected before the snow is slated to taper off midday Wednesday.


WSIU Radio reports that the storm forced the weather service to issue its first-ever blizzard warning for the region.


Authorities say the storm could lead to white-out conditions and may reduce visibility on southern Illinois roads to under a quarter mile at times.


Courthouses in Alexander, Franklin, Hamilton, Massac, Pope, Union and Williamson counties are closed.

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