Wintry temps move in, high winds cause damage across Chicago area

CHICAGO -- The arrival of wintry temperatures is being accompanied by high winds, and a lot of damage across the area.

The Chicago National Weather Service Forecast Office has extended a Wind Advisory for northeast Illinois into the northwest corner of Indiana calling for strong westerly winds gusting to 45 miles per hour until 6 p.m. today.

The strong winds caused damage throughout the Chicago area.

A car crash that injured two people on Canal and Cermak is being blamed on the wind. A traffic light was out at the intersection and the two cars collided.

At a Citgo gas station near 117th St. and Pulaski in Alsip, two cars were gassing up under an awning when strong winds knocked it over.  Luckily, witnesses say the two people who were pumping gas ran away just in time as the structure fell.

ComEd has reported over 2,000 customers are without power in Cook County, 580 in Will County, 800 in Lake County, 100 in Kane County, 140 in DuPage County and 130 in McHenry County.

Chicago officials are urging residents to be prepared as temperatures are expected to drop this week, bringing cold weather to the area.

Temperatures were in the 60s on Monday in Chicago but according to the National Weather Service they're expected to fall starting Tuesday with a low of 18 expected on Thursday night. Chicago officials say the city is monitoring conditions to prepare for and respond to the cold. They say residents should dress appropriately and drive according to conditions.

Anyone seeking access to a warming center or who has insufficient heat can call 311 for assistance in Chicago.

The city's Streets and Sanitation Department manages more than 300 snow vehicles and has 20 new trucks this season. The city also has 374,000 tons of salt in piles throughout Chicago.