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Thunderstorms And Hail Prompt Flash Flood Warning

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(STMW) – A flash flood warning is in effect for parts of the Chicago area, as a line of thunderstorms drops large hail and torrential rainfall Tuesday night.

As of 8:50 p.m., a severe thunderstorm warning is in effect for parts of Lake, Cook and Will counties, where hail as large as golf balls could damage homes and vehicles, the weather service said.

All other parts of the metro area remain under a severe thunderstorm watch until 11 p.m., the weather service said.

The storms walloped the western suburbs Tuesday night as they moved across northeastern Illinois.

In west suburban North Aurora and Naperville, residents reported 1-inch hailstones and as much as 6 inches of standing water on some streets and viaducts, the weather service said.

The torrential rainfall could leave some areas with 1 to 1.5 inches of rain per hour, and Chicago will likely see another inch of rain before the storms pass, the weather service said.

A flash flood warning flood is in effect until 11:30 p.m. in central Cook County and DuPage County.

Small streams, viaducts, highways and other low-lying spots could flood, the weather service said. Flooding is harder to recognize at night, and the weather service is warning motorists to turn around at the first signs of rising water.

Airlines have halted all flights in and out of Midway Airport because of the weather, and more than 115 flights at O’Hare Airport have been canceled, the city’s Department of Aviation said.

Delays at O’Hare are between an hour and an hour and 15 minutes, and are getting longer, the Federal Aviation Administration’s website said just before 9 p.m.

The rest of Tuesday will see a chance of showers again after midnight, along with patchy fog, forecasters said. Lows will fall into the lower 60s before a high in the lower 80s on Wednesday.

(Source: Sun-Times Media Wire © Chicago Sun-Times 2014. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)