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CLEVELAND – A winter storm has brought snow and hazardous driving conditions for the evening commute.

Motorists reported white-out conditions on major highways and roadways.

The Ohio Department of Transportation said most roadways are icy and snow-covered. Seventy-eight snow plows are out on highways. Officials are encouraging drivers to slow down and use caution.

There are reports of gridlock on downtown Cleveland streets. Traffic was backed up on the West Shoreway heading out of downtown Cleveland about an hour after the snow itself began to taper off. The roadway remains snow-covered and slushy.

The problem for commuters wasn’t so much the amount of snow, but the timing of the storm with many workers opting to head home early. As a result traffic at 4 p.m. looked like 5 p.m. and by 5:30 p.m., it wasn’t moving any faster. That flow hampered plows that could only clear the roadways as quickly as traffic would allow.

At about 5:30 p.m. Thursday, Chester Township in Geauga County issued a 24-hour snow ban. The dispatch officer told NewsChannel5 “Our town is a snow globe right now.”

Meteorologist Mark Johnson said 1 to 3 inches of snow fell in about two hours. The back end of the storm should start moving through the area at about 5 p.m. Read his updated forecast at

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Article Courtesy of WEWS NewsChannel 5