New Year’s Revelers gathered in New York City’s Times Square two days ago had to contend with the coldest weather in at least 55 years, with the temperature falling to just eight degrees, and -4 with the wind chill. Even so, temperatures were higher than expected. As President Donald Trump had reminded us, New Years was expected to be the coldest on record.
In the East, it could be the COLDEST New Year’s Eve on record. Perhaps we could use a little bit of that good old Global Warming that our Country, but not other countries, was going to pay TRILLIONS OF DOLLARS to protect against. Bundle up!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 29, 2017
But the cold snap that ushered in the new year has only worsened, with temperatures dropping 15 to 25 degrees below average in vast areas of the US, breaking century-old records. The cold front has sent temperatures below freezing in more than 92% of the Continental US, according to RT.
Because of this, citizens and authorities are taking unusual measures to stay warm and to keep facilities running.
For example, the water tower in an Evansdale suburb in Iowa froze when temperatures fell to minus 20 degrees. Mayor Doug Faas is considering sending in thermal suited divers to help break up the ice. The tower stores water for the town’s needs. Faas told the Waterloo Cedar Falls Courier that an ice cap which has formed inside the tower is making it impossible for the water to circulate in or out, and the city is exploring all options to find a solution.
Meanwhile, the National Weather Service has issued wind chill advisories and freeze warnings as temperatures plunged to a record low of 15 to 25 degrees for a vast area from South Texas to Canada, and from Montana through New England because of a high cold pressure front.
Lake on fire: sea smoke at #sunrise on Superior in frigid Duluth, MN. -7° and a wind chill of -31° with another shot of brutal cold on the way late week with temps dropping to ~20 below zero. #FrozenAmerica pic.twitter.com/Z6TmGzNRhE— Mike Seidel (@mikeseidel) January 2, 2018
The cold weather has been blamed for nine deaths in the past week.
With temperatures dipping as low as 23 degrees Farenheight, residents in upstate New York are gathering heating supplies in preparation for sub-zero temperatures anticipated for the rest of the week.
Some areas are even starting to run out of oil stocks. A man in Woodstock, New York said they tried at least 12 companies, and “everybody is tapped out."
“One of the small companies we called said the bigger oil companies have been calling them to see if they have backlogs of oil. It is starting to appear as if there is a shortage,” he said. “I don’t know if this cold spell was anticipated."
Authorities opened warming shelters in the South as temperatures dipped close to zero in Alabama and Georgia. In Aberdeen, South Dakota, the mercury dropped to a record-breaking minus 32.
It is only 10.6°F here in Marietta #Georgia this morning. This is the coldest it's been since I moved here in 2015 I am sure of it. Morning low was 10.3°F. #gawx #FrozenAmerica @NWSAtlanta pic.twitter.com/kwLVf9sQSP— James Sinko (@JamesSinko) January 2, 2018
#FrozenAmerica Something neat you can do in this arctic weather! *Caution involves very hot water* @AMHQ @foxandfriends @JimCantore @mikeseidel @mikebettes @gilsimmons Hey @ChrisWebby might make a nice backdrop for Raw Thoughts 3? See video at https://t.co/UHqO7PQ2Ql pic.twitter.com/pq87rRqSkg— Micah4CTGovernor (@MWelintukonis) January 2, 2018
Because of the Polar blast, the US burned the most natural gas ever on Monday, breaking a record set during the so-called polar vortex that blanketed the nation’s eastern half with arctic air in 2014. America consumed 143 billion cubic feet of gas as temperatures dipped to the lowest level in decades on New Year’s Day, topping the previous high of 142 billion from four years ago, data from PointLogic Energy show, via Bloomberg
“Now that we have some really cold weather, I think it will be the litmus for the bulls and the bears,” said Tom Saal, senior vice president of energy trading at FCStone Latin America. “We should see some pretty significant withdrawals” from storage.
Meanwhile, in Alpine, Wisconsin, a dozen elk had to be rescued after they fell through the ice.
About a dozen elk were roped, lassoed and dragged to safety Fri morning after they fell through the ice into Palisades Reservoir in Alpine, WY. Thanks to Dusty Jones (video) & ~20 community members who also used chain saws during the rescue. pic.twitter.com/sTpef95NxI— Mike Seidel (@mikeseidel) December 30, 2017
“About a dozen elk were roped, lassoed and dragged to safety Fri morning after they fell through the ice into Palisades Reservoir in Alpine, WY,” tweeted Mike Seidel from Wisconsin.