Arctic Blast Brings Dangerous Cold to Midwest, New England

By Reuters
January 21, 2019US News
Arctic Blast Brings Dangerous Cold to Midwest, New England
Bikers crossing Park Street at the intersection of University Ave during a late afternoon snow storm, in Madison, Wis., on Jan. 18, 2019 (Steve Apps/Wisconsin State Journal via AP)

Winter winds brought extreme cold and ice-slicked roads to the Midwestern and Eastern United States on Jan. 21, with Martin Luther King Jr. Day holiday and an ongoing government shutdown allowing many to heed official advice to stay indoors.

The arctic blast of frigid air has followed a January storm that dumped more than a foot of snow and sleet across the Northeast, which started melting on Jan. 20.

Temperatures fell to single-digits Fahrenheit from New York City to Boston and through northern New England and froze melting snow late on Sunday and early on Monday, said Marc Chenard at the National Weather Service’s Weather Prediction Center in College Park, Maryland. Winds up to 30 to 40 miles per hour added possibly deadly wind chill.

“This is definitely dangerous, life-and-death kind of weather happening,” Chenard said. “Minnesota and Wisconsin will see temperatures in the negative 20s.”

“Boston will be just 3 degrees (Fahrenheit) this morning, with wind chills of minus 12 or more,” he said. “New York City and D.C. will be in that same range, maybe hitting the teens later today. It’ll be record or near-record cold.”

The NWS issued wind-chill advisories and warnings for more than 10 states, from North Dakota and to East Coast metropolitan centers.

High temperatures for Monday are forecast at 17 Fahrenheit for New York City and 12 F for Boston.

More than 6,000 flights were delayed, mostly in New York and New England, according to, down from more than 14,000 on Sunday. More than 500 flights were canceled early Monday compared with more than 2,000 Sunday, the website reported.

United Airlines flight stuck in Newfoundland
Passengers aboard a United Airlines flight from Newark, New Jersey, to Hong Kong were left stuck on the ground for more than 14 hours in frigid weather with a dwindling supply of food on Jan. 20th, 2019. (CNN/Lloyd Slade/Steven Lau)

Tuesday’s weather will be only slightly warmer, Chenard said, with temperatures reaching the low 20s Fahrenheit in the Northeast. By Wednesday, some areas such as Boston will be in the high 30s or low 40s. Washington D.C. temperatures might reach 50 degrees, he said.

But the relatively warmer temperatures won’t last. Another arctic blast is on its way in time for next weekend.

By Rich McKay

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