Midwest Residents Stocking up Sub-Zero, Snowy Weather
Hardware and grocery stores all across the Midwest have been doing brisk business this weekend as people are stocking up on supplies ahead of the sub-zero temperatures and new snowfall that’s on the way. Extreme cold temperatures being caused by an historic ‘polar vortex’ could result in record lows across the Midwest and extreme cold in the Northeast. Conditions in the Midwest could very well become life-threatening for anyone who is not properly dressed so people are being urged to bundle up well if they have to venture outdoors early this week.
The short-lived, yet very powerful cold blast of air will likely freeze over the Great Lakes and other bodies of water. The state of Minnesota is not taking any chances as it’s already canceled Monday classes in all of its schools because of the dangerously cold weather.
Even though bundling up during the wintertime is second nature to residents of the Midwest, this historic cold is something most people have never experienced. The weather forecast is nothing short of shocking as it may be as cold as -25 in places like Fargo, ND, -31 in northern Minnesota and -15 in Chicago and Cincinnati. At those temperatures, it only takes a few short minutes for exposed skin to become frostbitten and for hypothermia to set in as wind chills can dip as low as 50, 60 or even 70 degrees below the freezing mark. Properties will face extreme challenge with their plumbing, and there is certain to be a large increase with burst pipes and home flood disasters.
The good news is that the bone-chilling cold is only expected to grip the Midwest for a few short days. On the downside, there may be an additional 6 to 12 inches of snow coming down on top of the up to a foot many areas already have. And, when heavy snowfall is accompanied by 35 mile per hour or so winds, getting around by car can be very difficult, dangerous and even impossible.
People living in the Midwest are being urged to dress well if they have to venture outdoors. Those traveling by car are being told to check their batteries and to carry some extras with them such as blankets, jumper cables and cat litter. People are also being told that if they do become stranded when driving, to stay in their vehicles until help arrives. Snow plows across the Midwest will be out in full force Sunday and Monday, doing battle with the winter weather that’s sure to snarl rush hour in cities such as Chicago, Indianapolis and Detroit.