One of those crashes deadly. State police say a 57-year-old Hanover Park man was killed when he was hit by a car after he left his vehicle, which had crashed on the Elgin-O'Hare Expressway.
Most of the crashes happened between 9:45 p.m. and 11 p.m. on the Elgin-O'Hare Expressway and Route 59. There were 17 crashes along 294 between Balmoral and Lake Cook Road.
All of the problems shut down several lanes and expressway ramps.
"My car started spinning and a car hit me as I was spinning," said one motorist.
"This black limousine slid sideways and was going about 60 miles per hour, and then the semi was coming down here sliding sideways all the way down the road," said another motorist.
Lanes and ramps were reopened by 1 a.m., and no other weather-related problems have been reported since.
"We just caution people, if you are involved in an accident on the expressway, pull over to a safe location. Get off those bridges because they ice over quickly," said Trooper Doug Yorke, Illinois State Police.
State police warned conditions will only get worse as the thermometer dips and the snow falls.
This is just our first icy event. This will happen quite often in the mornings now. Once the condensation from the ground freezes, that is when it gets icy really quick. We want to make sure people are paying attention," said Yorke.