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Illinois — Chicagoans are being urged to stock up on salt, shovels and food–because a big blizzard is on its way.

Forecasters are predicting that the area could see 20 inches of snow Tuesday afternoon through Wednesday. If that holds true, it would be the city’s third-biggest snowstorm, overshadowed only by the 21.6 inches in 1999 and the mother of all Chicago snowstorms, the 23 inches of snow that fell in 1967.

Forty-three winter storms have produced 10 inches or more in Chicago since record-keeping began in 1886.

Paula Lawson, a 59-year-old community organizer from suburban Glencoe, said she remembered the big storm in 1967, which “really did stop the world for days.”

Aside from hefty snow totals, the winds could send 18-foot Lake Michigan waves onto Lake Shore Drive Tuesday night into early Wednesday, the Chicago Sun-Times reports.

The National Weather Service called the storm “dangerous, multifaceted and potentially life threatening” on its website, predicting white-out conditions and extremely hazardous roads.

If the storm reaches its full potential, it could spell trouble for busy Chicagoans. But some residents aren’t too worried.

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