Put On Another Sweater, Because The U.S. Is Experiencing An ‘Arctic Blast’

The week between Christmas and New Year’s Day is usually a pleasant one. A lot of people have time off work, kids are enjoying all of their new toys as well as a break from school, and everyone is looking forward to the new year ahead. However, the last week of 2017 was marked by record-low temperatures for much of the United States and Canada.

cold weather photo
Getty Images | Stephanie Keith

The cold snap in Canada led authorities to cancel outdoor skating events in order to prevent frostbite. Residents in Alberta and Saskatchewan even dealt with cracking glass windows due to the freezing weather.

Conditions in the U.S. have not been much better. According to the National Weather Service, temperatures in upstate New York reached a whopping minus-39 degrees Fahrenheit on the morning of Dec. 28. According to ABC News, at least nine people have died over the past week throughout the country due to the cold weather.

Check out this graph from Boston meteorologist Eric Fisher that shows just how extreme this recent blast of Arctic weather has been:

The Northeast is not the only area of the country affected. In fact, at least 24 daily record lows were tied or broken on Dec. 28 in cities around the nation, from Flint, Mich. to Baltimore, Md.

Even southern states, which typically can expect milder temperatures than the rest of country this time of year, have been affected. Temperatures dipped into the low 20s and even the single digits in Tennessee, Texas and the Carolinas.

Relief may still be a ways off for some parts of the country: A second Arctic blast is expected to hit the Northeast on Thursday and Friday, according to Newsweek.
“The current cold air outbreak is pretty intense and maybe even more impressive is its durability,” Judah Cohen, a director of seasonal forecasting at Atmospheric and Environmental Research, told Mashable in an email. “So, a moderation seems inevitable regardless of the behavior of the polar vortex. So far, I don’t see a clear sign of the strong polar vortex coupling all the way to the surface, but if it did, then we could experience an extended period of mild weather in the Eastern U.S.”

In other words, bundle up!