Chicago weather: 2 tornadoes briefly touch down in Kankakee County

Two tornadoes reportedly touched down briefly in Kankakee County as rain swept across the Chicago area Tuesday afternoon.

"There were what appeared to be two brief tornado touchdowns in Kankakee County. We’re still trying to assess those, but those were associated with a line of fast-moving showers," National Weather Service meteorologist Lee Carlaw said.

One of the twisters was reported just west of Manteno and the other was north of Herscher. They touched down around 2 p.m., he said.

The storms "didn’t produce any lightning at all," Carlaw added. "It does happen from time to time that you get these strongly sheared environments that we have where you don’t really produce any lightning, but you get some really brief spin-ups, and that’s what we saw today."

No damage was reported from the tornadoes, and Carlaw said the wind gusts of 45 to 50 mph across the rest of the Chicago area Tuesday likely didn’t leave any damage. Midway Airport recorded a 48 mph wind gust, and Kankakee Airport logged 44 mph winds, and a 50 mph gust was registered in Will County.

If confirmed, the two twisters would add to the 20 tornadoes already reported in Illinois this year. The state so far has seen the third-most tornadoes in the country, behind Ohio’s 26 and Florida’s 30, according to the weather service.

The precipitation was expected to continue late Tuesday night after a break between storms, bringing a "brief return to winter" Wednesday morning.

"There is a good likelihood of seeing some snow, first across the northwest suburbs late [Tuesday night)] and then probably working its way into the city toward daybreak" Wednesday, Carlaw said.

Heavy, wet snow was forecast for Wednesday, likely causing slushy road conditions for the morning commute.

"By midday or early afternoon, any snow is going to change back over to rain as temperatures warm to like 34 or 35 degrees, but through the morning there could be a period of light to moderate snow," Carlaw said.