The U.S. National Weather Service said additional snow accumulations of two to four inches (5-10 cm) are expected in Chicago area till Friday evening.
Winter storm watches and warnings are in effect Thursday all the way from Montana to MI.
Six warming centers are in operation, where Chicagoans can go to find safe refuge from extreme weather, said officials.
Detroit and Flint have recorded about five inches, and another few are expected as the storm stretches into Friday evening.
"The good news is we're tried and tested here", he said.
The Weather Channel is predicting that as the storm continues east over the weekend, western, central and upstate NY into northern New England will receive less than 6 inches, but a few spots east of lakes Erie and Ontario may see more.
Students in the Milwaukee Public School District - Wisconsin's largest school district - have Friday off. Schools across Nebraska and Iowa closed or delayed the start of classes. Court closings were reported in Chicago and Detroit, and driver's license offices were shut in the Chicago area.
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The Des Moines Register reported that three to seven inches of snow fell in northern Iowa Friday morning.
A section of Interstate 94 in southwestern MI was blocked after dozens of vehicles crashed amid heavy snowfall Friday.
About 750 flights were canceled at Chicago's O'Hare International Airport and about 300 flights were canceled at Midway, the Chicago Department of Aviation said Friday. More than 200 flights were canceled at Detroit Metropolitan Airport in Romulus, Michigan, by early Friday.
Many areas of southern MI have approached or exceeded a half-foot (15 centimeters) of snow as part of a winter storm moving across the Great Lakes.
The snow caused dozens of crashes on icy Chicago expressways as residents of the third-biggest USA city struggled to get to work and to dig out from a storm system that had stretched from Montana to MI.
Schools in Detroit shut for the day along with Wayne State University in Detroit and other schools across MI. People should stay off the roads if possible, but if they drive they should expect delays and hazardous conditions. Schools across MI also cancelled classes.