(Austin) An arctic air mass is expected over the next few hours over the northern Great Plains of the United States, the upper Midwest and New England.
Officials warned on Thursday that the wind chill could push the mercury to -45 degrees Celsius and even -50 ℃ in some places, “the most intense cold felt in several decades”.
The strong winds and cold air will create wind chill “rarely seen in northern and eastern Maine,” reads an advisory issued by the US National Weather Service.
The head of meteorology at the Mount Washington Observatory, which for several decades held the world record for the strongest gust of wind, estimated Thursday that the wind could blow there at 160 kilometers per hour.
“We take safety very seriously at high altitude,” said Jay Broccolo. And the weekend forecast looks very painful, even for us. »
Mercury could dip to -73℃ at the top of the mountain taking into account wind chill.
Gusts of 130 kilometers per hour were already recorded at altitude on Friday morning.
The wind could be the cause of power outages in Maine, and emergency shelters have started to open in the area.
Several ski resorts have announced a reduction in their activities. A popular outdoor hockey tournament has been postponed and the National Toboggan Championship has been postponed for a day.
Schools were closed Friday in Boston and Manchester, New Hampshire’s largest city. The Manchester School Board explained that it is simply “too cold” to ask children to be outside.
Meanwhile, more than 240,000 people were still without power Friday morning in Texas, after a cold front swept through for several days that pushed the mercury below freezing.
The bad weather has killed at least 11 on the roads of Texas, Arkansas and Oklahoma.