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25 Jan 2019 | 11:49 PM UTC

US: Extreme cold temperatures forecast in several states Jan. 25-31

United States of America News Alert

Outbreak of extremely cold temperatures forecast in several states beginning on January 25; arctic air to last at least until January 31

TIMEFRAME expected from 1/25/2019, 12:00 AM until 1/31/2019, 11:59 PM (America/Chicago). COUNTRY/REGION Minnesota, Wisconsin, Illinois, Iowa, North Dakota, South Dakota, Indiana, Virginia, West Virginia, Washington, DC, Maryland, New York, Pennsylvania, Massachusetts

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Outbreaks of severely cold temperatures are forecast for the northern Plains, upper Midwest, and Northeast from Friday, January 25, through Thursday, January 31. The states of Minnesota, Wisconsin, Illinois, Iowa, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Indiana will experience temperatures of -23°C (-10°F) to -34°C (-30°F) with wind chills of -45°C (-50°F) to -53°C (-65°F) from Wednesday, January 30, to Thursday, January 31.

The Mid-Atlantic region, including parts of Virginia, West Virginia, Washington, DC, and Maryland, will likely remain outside the arctic front, although flash freezing is possible on Tuesday, January 29, creating hazardous travel conditions. In the Northeast, including New York, Pennsylvania, and Massachusetts, will experience temperatures ranging from -17°C (1°F) to -6°C (20°F) through Thursday. Transportation disruptions, including flight delays and cancelations and adverse driving conditions, are possible.


The extreme temperatures are caused by low pressure system of arctic air that sometimes travels south, in an event commonly known as a "polar vortex." Officials recorded lows of -26°C (-16°F) in Chicago (Illinois) and -27°C (-18°F) in Green Bay (Wisconsin) during the so-called Polar Vortex of 2014.


Individuals in the US are advised to monitor local weather reports, anticipate transportation disruptions (e.g. flight delays and cancelations, icy roads, limited visibility), refrain from unnecessary travel, and keep sufficient food, water, and warm clothing if driving in the region.


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