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Breaking: 3 Children Killed in Hammond Fire

HammondFireTimes (NWI Times photo)
Tragedy in Hammond.  Three children are dead after a house fire late Wednesday night in the 600 block of Sibley. Officials say two children and their father survived, but it's not known if the three children who were killed are also related. The man reportedly sustained third-degree burns and was able to get two children, ages three and six, out of the home.  Hammond Firefighters were called to a home around 10:15 pm, and the house was in flames when they arrived, authorities say.  The Region News Team's Scotty Smith will be reporting from the scene this morning....

Seven Deaths in Indiana Related to Snow or Cold WX

Officials report at least seven deaths in Indiana related to snow or cold weather have been confirmed, with other deaths and their relation to the storm are being evaluated. A total of 29 Indiana counties have been declared a state of disaster after Governor Mike Pence signed the executive order on Monday, which includes Lake, Porter, LaPorte, Newton, Jasper, Starke and Pulaski counties....

Residents Asked to Help Clear Snow at Highland Bus Stops

Highland PD
In Highland, police are asking residents to clear snow from crosswalks at bus stops and sidewalks on school walk routes as schools resume classes. Highland Police report doing so will help keep students from having to walk or wait for the bus in the streets....

ISP Lowell Post Reports a Total of 551 Calls to Service

Indiana State Police logo
Indiana State Police at the Lowell Post announced this evening that, from midnight Sunday through noon today, troopers have worked 124 property damage crashes, 25 personal injury crashes,165 slide-offs and assisted 166 motorists for a total of 551 calls to service. State Police report the most common cause of the crashes and slide-offs during the snow fall and icy weather was due to drivers traveling too fast for the existing road conditions and remind motorists that slick roads don not cause crashes, your driving behavior on those roads does, so please slow down, be patient and plan your travels according to the weather and traffic conditions.

For a link to the latest on up-to-date road conditions, visit

Road Conditions Improving, but Expect Slick/Slushy Spots

Indot Logo color
NORTHWEST INDIANA –Indiana Department of Transportation (INDOT) crews have been spreading salt, chemical de-icers, and abrasives to attack the hard-pack snow and ice that remains on the roads across Northwest Indiana, left behind by the severe winter weather. In addition, crews are using plows and heavy duty equipment to break the melting hard-pack apart. But INDOT wants to stress, road conditions may get worse before they get better.
As the de-icing agents melt through the thick hard-pack, it will become slushy, causing difficult driving conditions. In addition, falling temperatures and snow flurries across the Northwest Indiana District could create slick conditions once again overnight and tomorrow morning.
INDOT continues to urge drivers to slow down considerably on the roads as we work to clear pavement. Motorists should expect fair-to-difficult driving conditions on the roadways across Northwest Indiana for the next several days, and should adjust their driving habits accordingly.
Drivers are reminded, our area was hit by heavy snow, strong winds, and historically low temperatures over the course of four days. It will take more than one day to recover, and bring road conditions back to normal.
Drivers in Northwest Indiana can monitor road closures, road conditions, and traffic alerts at any time via the District’s social media channels: or Twitter @INDOTNorthwest. Or visit for INDOT’s TrafficWise Traveler Information Service.


No Injuries After Semi Goes Over Barrier Wall

isp semi 1
(Photos Courtesy of ISP Lowell Post)
isp semi 2
The driver of a semi was not injured after he wrapped his semi around an informational sign structure this morning on I-80/94, just west of the Burns Harbor/Porter exit. Indiana State Police Lowell Post reports the semi, which was loaded with 25-thousand pounds of food headed to Meijer's, was heading west in the center lane when the driver could not slow down due to a crash that had just occurred and lost control. As a result the semi jack-knifed to the left and struck the concrete barrier wall, causing the tractor to jump over the barrier wall with part of the trailer on top of the barrier wall wrapping around an informational sign structure. After hitting the sign structure, the hood of the tractor flew off into the eastbound lanes and hit the vehicle of a 23 year old Wisconsin woman who was in the right lane. State Police say the woman was not injured and no semi load was lost. Both east and westbound lanes were closed for a time for the removal of the semi and cleanup of diesel fuel that was lost due to the crash. ...

Frozen Water Covering 7300 Block of Meton Rd in Gary

A water main break inside a building in the 73-hundred block of Melton Road in Gary has police asking drivers to avoid that area as water that soon froze is across the entire intersection of US 20 and Old Hobart Road. Gary Police Public Information Officer Corp. Gabrielle King says the building belongs to the Illinois Bus Company, who is trying to get the state to come out and put down salt.
If you must travel in the 73-hundred block of Melton Road at Old Hobart Road, please proceed with caution. ...

Snowmobile/ORV Registration Switches from DNR to BMV

The weekend storm brought a slice of heaven for snowmobile enthusiasts, but the Indiana Department of Natural Resources wants to remind Hoosiers that mandatory registration for owners of snowmobiles and other outdoor recreational vehicles switched on January 1st, from being handled by the DNR to the Bureau of Motor Vehicles. Registration is valid for three-years and must be renewed every three-years thereafter. Registration can be done online or in person at any BMV branch. For a link to the online registration click
For those with any questions, contact 1-888-692-6841....

Train Service Restored Between S. Bend/Michigan City

NICTD logo
NICTD reports South Shore regularly scheduled train service between South Bend and Michigan City, including Hudson Lake, will resume today with eastbound train number 9, scheduled to arrive in South Bend at 4:03pm EST/3:03 CST, and westbound train 20 is scheduled to depart South bend at 4:53pm EST/3:53pm CST.
NICTD says the South Shore's 800 train service information line remains out of service so until further notice passengers are advised to call the RTA Travel Center at 312-836-7000. Officials reports the RTA Travel Center is experiencing greater call volumes because of the weather and callers may encounter a busy signal. For more information, visit


One Injured When Car Flips Over Retaining Wall

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(Photos Courtesy of Indiana State Police Lowell Post)
isp car flips
A 56 year old Portage woman was taken to Saint Mary's Medical Center in Hobart with non-life threatening injuries to her face after her vehicle flipped over a retaining wall and landed on its roof this morning on I-80/94. Indiana State Police Lowell Post reports a preliminary investigation revealed that, at approximately 10:05am, Shelby Street had just gotten off southbound I-65 to the I-80/94 eastbound ramp and was merging onto eastbound I-80/94 into the right lane when she lost control. ...

Valpo, Griffith, Munster Amended Trash Schedule

Residents in many northwest Indiana communities are dealing with trash and recycling schedule changes due to the weather. In Valparaiso, the delay means that Monday's trash will be picked up today, Tuesday's on Thursday, today's on Friday and Thursday's on Saturday, with the regular schedule resuming on Monday, January 13th.
In Griffith, trash and recycling collection is delayed one-day. The town reports collection will be on Friday, January 10th.
In Munster, town officials report Waste Management will double-up Monday's route with the route to be completed on Thursday. All other days this week will be one-day late. So if your regular pick up is Tuesday, now it is today, Wednesday pick up is now Thursday and so on. For any questions please contact the Munster Public Works Department....

Snow Maps for Indiana

regional snowfall
A map of snowfall by the National Weather Service shows how Indiana took some of the worst of the snowstorm that hit this past weekend.  The pink/purple colors show the higher amounts of snowfall .   
Here's a link to more info:     

Frozen Pipe Bursts at Nursing Home

According to local officials, a frozen pipe burst Tuesday night at Chicagoland Christian Village in Winfield. Damage included the collapse of an interior ceiling in a part of the west wing, but the roof was not damaged, reports say. Lakes of the Four Seasons Volunteer Fire Force Chief Jeremy Campbell says the feeder pipe that burst was part of a fire sprinkler system at the facility on East 117th Avenue.  There were no injuries reported.


Car-Train Collision in Rensselaer

No injuries were reported in a train-car collision in Rensselaer early today. Rensselaer Police Chief Jeff Phillips says at 5:30 this morning at the CSX tracks at North Cullen Street a motorist reportedly went around downed gates and the front end of that person's vehicle was struck by an oncoming freight train. Chief Phillips says the driver of the car was cited for failure to stop at the crossing signal....

Winter Storm, Polar Plunge, Then 'Sundogs'

The severe winter weather in northwest Indiana was followed by numerous 'sundog' sightings Tuesday.  The National Weather Service in Chicago describes 'sundogs' as "a pair of brightly colored spots on the circumference of the sun halo, often located directly apart from each other.  They form as a result of sunlight being refracted by ice crystals.  These are most commonly caused by cirrus clouds which are composed of ice crystals.  However, crystals were present in the lower atmosphere on January 6th due to both blowing snow as well as light cloud development. Because the lower atmosphere was so cold these lower clouds were composed of ice crystals."  You can see photos from around Indiana and Illinois submitted to the National Weather Service.   Click here to see them:    
(Photo/Colleen Zana, Zana Photography)

Water Main Break Closes Food Bank NWI

Food Bank of Northwest Indiana will be closed today due to a water main break, said Megan Sikes, spokeswoman for the Food Bank.  Please check the Food Bank's website for updates in terms of when they will reopen: .  The Food Bank of Northwest Indiana was closed Monday and Tuesday due to the winter storm, and they were hoping to reopen today until the water main break....

Difficulty Finding Regular Unleaded

Getting things from here to there just about everywhere in the state, and especially the Region, has been especially difficult due to the winter storm... we got a call today from a listener in Lake County who said he had to go to several gas stations to find regular unleaded gasolene... he said he was told tankers have been unable to get to some stations, and that he found regular unleaded and unleaded plus were out in several locations. He said he was able to find regular unleaded at a station on US 30 in Merrillville....

Crews Battle Whiting House Fire

Ice formed on fire hoses Tuesday as crews battled a house fire in the 19-hundred block of Indianapolis Boulevard in Whiting Tuesday. Firefighters from Whiting and East Chicago responded responded around 10 am. The homeowner tells today's Times her husband, tired from a long night of work, fell asleep, forgetting about a pot boiling on the stove. She was at work when she got the call her house was on fire. Her husband reportedly got out okay. An employee at the Walgreen's across the street is said to have spotted smoke, telling a Coca-Cola delivery man who ran over and pounded on the door....

Some Warnings Lifted, but Roads Still Hazardous

State agencies are strongly advising motorists to stay off the roads unless travel is absolutely necessary, even if county travel isn't at “warning” level, which means travel may be restricted to emergency workers only.  At last check, Lake, Porter, LaPorte and Starke Counties were under a travel watch, Jasper and Pulaski Counties remained at travel warning level, and Newton was now in an advisory.  Here's a link to the Indiana Department of Homeland Security Travel Status Map (refresh for latest info):
All roads from south central Indiana and through all of northern Indiana remain a combination of ice-covered to snow-packed and ice-covered with bridges and overpasses remaining extremely slick and hazardous.
If travel is absolutely necessary, residents should plan ahead by dressing appropriately for the extreme cold, have a fully charged cell phone with a portable charger and only use a car that is in good mechanical condition with a full tank of fuel.
Stranded motorists should call for help immediately. Be prepared to call a tow service and understand calls for tow services are exceeding capacity to respond, which means motorists could be waiting several hours before help arrives. The Joint Information Center in Indiana says while waiting for the tow truck, remember that on average a vehicle will burn one gallon of fuel per hour while idling. If low on fuel, run the engine in 15 minute increments to keep warm.
Information on state highways can be found through INDOT’s TrafficWise Traveler Information Service at Conditions are constantly changing. Even if roads are not closed with signs or by designation, travel may still be hazardous.
And even if your county is not designated as “red,” the highest warning on the Indiana Department of Homeland Security (IDHS) travel advisory map, travel conditions still may not be safe for driving. To view the IDHS County Travel Status map, go to ( ) .

Cook County Jail to Resume Inmate Visitation/Discharge

Cook County Sheriff
The Cook County Sheriff's Office reports they will resume inmate visitation as scheduled tomorrow. Additionally, they say weather conditions will be safe enough to resume the normal inmate discharge process. A link for visitors to access the visiting hours for each jail division is available at


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Laura-WAKE Scott-WAKE Brent-WAKE
Region News Team
Region News Team
Region News Team
Region News Team
Region News Team
Region News Team


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