The National Weather Service warned over the weekend that a very cold blast of frigid arctic air will push its way into the Upper Midwest from northern Canada this week. This cold air will make temperature plunge to way below freezing in many areas. In fact, the NWS is warning that highs could be around 35 degrees colder than normal for this time of the year. People living in some parts of Minnesota are already experiencing frigidly cold temperatures like those living in International Falls where the mercury levels never made it to the plus side of thermometers Sunday.
A massive low pressure system is being blamed for the cold weather that is going to affect millions of people this week. The extreme cold weather is bound to cause all types of problems from vehicles not starting to furnace breakdowns and broken water pipes inside homes and businesses. Some Americans will get a double whammy from this blast of cold temperature as some areas will see snow. Some parts of the Upper Midwest can see a couple inches of white stuff while heavier snow may fall over northern Minnesota and northern North Dakota where up to a foot or more could come down.
The cold air moving into the US will come in two parts. The first push of frigid air will be cold but not as cold as the second round that starts Tuesday. While it is not unusual for the northern part of the US to get cold weather at the start of the year, what is coming is being called “brutal” as temperatures are likely to struggle to make it above zero on Wednesday in many places including Chicago and Detroit.
People living in the Midwest are being told to be ready for the cold blast of frigid air by bundling up and spending as little time outside as possible. This is also the type of weather that serves as a reminder to homeowners to check their furnaces and fireplaces to be sure everything is working as it should. Bitterly cold weather is also the cause of many frozen pipes which can burst to flood homes and businesses so now is the time to insulate pipes and keep water dripping from faucets to avoid freeze ups. Vehicle owners should also prepare for the cold by checking fluid levels, tire pressure and by carrying extra clothing and blankets in case they become stranded.