Coldest air so early in the season brings shivers


The surge of polar air across the eastern two-thirds of the country this week has tied or broken more than 300 cold weather records since Veterans Day from the Plains to the Gulf Coast.

Tuesday’s high of 28 degrees in Columbus was the lowest on record for the date, and Wednesday morning’s reading of 11 degrees broke the 1911 record by three degrees. Morning lows in the suburbs ranged from 8 to 10 degrees.

Readings around the Buckeye State Wednesday morning dipped into the single digits from Lancaster north and west, and as low as -2 degrees at De Graff in Logan County. Afternoon highs will struggle to reach 30 degrees across the state, with some cloudiness ahead of a clipper system.

The bitterly cold air arrived from northern Canada by way of Siberia, sent the mercury tumbling to -21 degrees at Turner, Mont., and -13 at Hibbing, Minn. Freezing temperatures were reported in South Texas and near the Gulf Coast early Wednesday.

Gradual moderation is expected over the next several days, though a reinforcing shot of chilly air will follow a cold front on Thursday, keeping readings about 15 degrees below normal through the weekend, with highs in the low 40s in the Columbus area.

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