The first storm, aptly named Hercules – because it packed quite a punch – dumping snow and ice with gale force winds throughout much of the nation last week has pretty much moved on. But this new storm – now being called Ion, is the follow-up to Hercules.
Ion is the polar storm that is bringing some of the coldest air this nation has seen in decades.
Officials are advising the public to take extra precautions during this record-breaking Winter Storm Ion.
“This storm will be one for the record books, and we want to make sure everyone stays safe and warm until it passes,” Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn said in a statement on Saturday. “State crews continue working around the clock to keep residents safe and to respond to any emergency situations that may occur.”
Expected lows in the -20s Fahrenheit across North Dakota and Minnesota, with wind chills of -50 or even more frigid, according to the National Weather Service.
A Wind Chill Warning was issued for much of the Chicago metropolitan area, along with dozens of other major U.S. cities. That is what is going to make those temps drop so dramatically.
Wind chills will be between -40 and -50 in Chicago and as low as -65 in some places like North Dakota where many are already without power.
State police are warning drivers that road conditions are expected to “deteriorate” throughout much of the nation Sunday night and into Monday morning.
“The higher winds are starting to cause roads to drift over and become impassable,” said Lieutenant Pat Gengler in a statement.
If you’re able to stay indoors, it is strongly advised – this weather is a serious risk to anyone who ventures outside. If your car were to stall, or slide off the road, it only takes minutes for frostbite to set in, not to mention the possibility of freezing to death.
The Red Cross has made some suggestions for those in these frozen areas about how to stay prepared.
And by all means, don’t forget your pets, bring them in – they are also at risk.
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