Chicago Weather: Light snow leads to crashes on expressways; Bitter cold continues

CHICAGO (WLS) -- The freezing cold temperatures will continue Tuesday after breaking records on Monday, and light snow has led to numerous crashes across the area.

The high for Tuesday is forecast to be around 20 degrees, with wind chills still below zero. Light snow falling Tuesday morning is not expected to accumulate and occasional flurries are possible in the afternoon.

LIVE TRAFFIC: Check out conditions on the ABC7 Traffic Map
Tangle ups and crashes littered the expressways as commuters navigated through a tricky commute.

"You have to keep both hands on the wheel and you have to respect the other drivers and be at a distance," said commuter Phyllis Hightower. "You have to have room to brake."



WATCH: ABC7 AccuWeather Forecast



A light dusting of snow made roads slick, especially on bridges and overpasses. Dozens of crashes, mostly minor, happened at the Ike and Tri-State interchange.

The Stevenson and Tri-State interchange was also a mess. Illinois State Police tried to keep up telling drivers in fender benders to exchange information and report it at a later date. Meanwhile commuters were taken by surprise.

"Especially on the Stevenson," said commuter Manuel Foster. "I was really surprised, especially when there's really nothing out here. It's just slick gong on the side streets."

How to drive safely in snow
EMBED More News Videos

Driving in snow and ice is tricky to master - but here are some tips that should help.



Only one tenth of an inch of snow was enough to cause so many problems, and it was complicated by below zero wind chills in some areas. If you ask Danielle Bennett, she's over it.

"We went so many years with a good winter," she said. "I think it's like all catching up. You know, we were spoiled for a couple of years, but that's over with now."

Some of the ugliest travel times were on the Kennedy. Inbound was an hour and 20 minutes and the Stevenson from the Veteran's Memorial Tollway to Lake Shore Drive was an hour and 30 minutes

Temps won't climb above freezing until Friday.

WATCH: How to avoid frostbite, stay safe in dangerous cold
EMBED More News Videos

Temperatures are expected to fall dangerously low Tuesday through Friday, with wind chill advisories and wind chill warnings in effect.



The recorded high for Monday was 12 degrees, which broke the record cold high temperature of 17 degrees set back in 1890, 129 years ago.

The National Weather Service recorded a temperature of -3 degrees, the coldest observed temperature in Chicago during March since 2002, when it was -7 degrees on March 4. It is only the 17th subzero temperature in March since 1871 and well below the average low temperature of 26 degrees.

While the homeless living in the tent city near the Dan Ryan Expressway and Roosevelt can go to shelters or police stations that serve as warming centers, many are afraid to.

Find a Chicago area warming center near you

WATCH: Homeless get helping hand during dangerous cold
EMBED More News Videos

Homeless advocates and people living in this tent city in Chicago are concerned that city or state authorities will shut down the encampment.



But as the frigid cold lingers through the first week of March, homeless advocates and people living in the tent city area are concerned that city or state authorities will shut down the encampment - so a few good Samaritans are stepping in.

"A lot of rumors that they're going to get rid of all the tents and fence it off for sure no official word no everybody statement but we're planning for the future," volunteer Michael Lyp said.

WATCH: How to avoid frostbite, stay safe in dangerous cold
EMBED More News Videos

Temperatures are expected to fall dangerously low Tuesday through Friday, with wind chill advisories and wind chill warnings in effect.



Five volunteers pooled resources to bring them to the Super 8 motel in North Lake.

"We got together when we knew the cold snap was coming and said, hey, let's bring them away from downtown Chicago and get them out of the way from what they're used to and get them somewhere where we can get them a fresh start," Lyp said.

"We have, I want to say, 19 people right now. We have probably 10 or 11 rooms right now," volunteer Eric Henderson said.

WATCH: Look back on Chicago's coldest days

EMBED More News Videos

Here's a look at the coldest days on record in the Windy City.



The volunteers paid for the rooms out of pocket and delivered pizza to the homeless they put up during their lunch breaks- but that's not all.

"We stay with them overnight. We're not just putting them in a hotel. It's not a free for all," Lyp said.

The volunteers said they brought a volunteer who had been living in a tent city since he was 13 to a center to seek sobriety. So far, there's no word on the future of the tent city.
Copyright © 2019 WLS-TV. All Rights Reserved.