Freezing weather is proving to be the biggest nuisance of 2014, shutting down schools in several states and even forcing some businesses to close their doors early.
And for those who have to work, it’s down right miserable as their skin almost instantly freezes as soon as they step outside and some roads are closed due to icy, snowy conditions.
Experts, and moms, recommend to wear layers to protect against frost bite and other dangerous effects from the arctic blast.
In this freezing weather is also a good idea to keep cars up to date in their tune-ups and a tank full of gas just in case motorists get stranded on the road.
In Indianapolis, the Mayor declared a “red” weather alert and ordered everyone to stay off the roads, making it an offense to get in your car unless it’s an emergency.
With some states calling off schools, millions of parents have been forced to find last minute arrangements so they can go to work. Those of us lucky enough to work from home are blessed.
In Wisconsin, Governor Walker left it up to the individual school districts whether to close on Monday or not, all did due to the freezing temperatures and even more brutal wind chill making it life-threatening for kids waiting for school buses. Schools were also canceled on Tuesday.
The freezing temperatures will finally start moving east –sorry folks– on Tuesday, leaving the Midwest which has endured this unusual Polar vortex of 2014 –as the event is being called– since Saturday.
In a rare move, 3M –based in St. Paul, Minnesota– closed its headquarters on Monday, allowing about 10,000 people to stay home.
Spokeswoman Jacqueline Berry said it had been at least 10 years since 3M had made a similar move. “It’s brutal out there,” she said. “The decision was made by management in terms of the safety of the employees.”
National Weather meteorologist Brian Korty says the freezing temperatures will likely reach Florida:
“This cold air bath, by the time it’s all over, it will cover everything from Rockies to the East Coast. It isn’t going to last very long. Still, for most people, it’s the coldest winter they’ve felt in a while.”
With temperatures 20 to 40 degrees below average in much of the Midwest, many have listened to the advice to stay indoors and as there was plenty of warning from the National Weather Service, people were stocked-up so they didn’t have to venture outdoors for groceries.
Illinois reported about 10,000 customers were without power on Monday. In Indiana, the number of outages reached 30,000, according to officials and the National Guard was called in to evacuate residents in Indianapolis, a city spokesperson said.
Stretches of two major Interstates in Indiana –I-94 and I-65– were closed due to being impassable.
Minnesota Governor Mark Dayton said the National Weather Service could not find one reading above 20 degrees on Monday morning and declared all schools closed for the first time in 17-years.
The freezing weather will ease in the Midwest starting Tuesday around noon. On Wednesday, temperatures are still very cold, but in positive territory and by the weekend it will be a more balmy 30 or 40 degrees so we can all finally go outdoors.