|October 2, 2023|
Blast of frigid air poised to smash records
MINNEAPOLIS - Dangerously cold air has descended on the Midwest and Plains states as new snow brought whiteout conditions to some areas and freezing rain threatened to cancel more flights in the Northeast.
The arctic blast — expected to be the coldest in decades — is bringing below-zero temperatures to more than half of the continental U.S. through Monday and Tuesday.
The coldest air was hitting the Dakotas and Minnesota, which clocked temperatures of 20 degrees below zero on Sunday. At its lowest, the wind chill in Minnesota was a numbing minus 50 in Flag Island.
“It’s just a dangerous cold,” National Weather Service meteorologist Butch Dye in Missouri said Sunday morning.
And as they brace for the bitter cold, Midwesterners also must dig out of another nasty snowstorm.
Five to 9 inches fell Sunday in the Chicago area, while a foot was dumped in the St. Louis area. Eight to 10 inches was expected to pile up in central Illinois, Indiana and Michigan throughout the day.
Forecasts also called for several inches in western Tennessee and 1 to 3 inches in Kentucky.
Across the country, at least 2,400 flights had been cancelled Sunday, according to tracking website FlightAware.
Flights were temporarily grounded for two hours at New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport after a plane skidded off the runway and into a snow bank at 8 a.m. No one was injured.
Chicago’s O’Hare and Midway international airports cancelled about 1,200 flights as well.
Major airports in Detroit, Philadelphia, Newark, N.J., and Boston were also reporting significant weather-related delays.
JetBlue announced it is waiving its change and cancellation fees for customers travelling to or from 17 Northeast airports affected by the weather beginning last Thursday through Monday.
Grocery stores were also feeling the squeeze from the storm. In St. Louis, shops sold out of the essentials before the weather onslaught.
“The problem is the bread is sold out. We’re out of milk. We sold out of chips, chicken wings, some meats,” Issa Arar of Salama Supermarket said.
The frigid air blasting into the Plains was part of what the National Weather Service called “incredibly cold and possibly record-breaking temperatures” expected throughout the week, with the brutally cold air expected to spread to the Northeast and Gulf Coast Monday and Tuesday.
Forecasters are expecting bitterly cold temperatures in many places: 25 below zero in Fargo, N.D., minus 31 in International Falls, Minn., and 15 below in Indianapolis and Chicago. Wind chills may reach 50, 60 or even 70 below zero — temperatures much of the country has not seen in decades. (Source: nbcnews.com)
Story Date: January 6, 2014