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Blast Of Arctic Air Breaks Records In East Coast; Temps Set To Rise

Pedestrians walk in the frigid air in Kendall Square. (Jesse Costa/WBUR)
Pedestrians walk in the frigid air in Kendall Square. (Jesse Costa/WBUR)

The blast of Arctic air that engulfed portions of the East Coast has broken cold temperature records in several cities — although a warm-up is just around the corner.

The National Weather Service said the temperature in Worcester fell to -9 on Sunday, breaking a record of -5 set in 1942. In Providence, temperatures fell to -3, breaking a record low of -1 set in 1912.

And in Hartford, the temperature dropped to -9, smashing the previous record of 1, also set in 1912.

Boston tied a low-temperature record set more than a century ago in 1896 of -2.

The good news is the bone-numbing air is set to push out of the region.

By Monday, Boston temperatures should return to a more seasonable low 30s. The mercury will continue to rise and Boston could see temperatures in the mid-40s by Thursday and as high as the low-50s on Friday.

Patrick Burke, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service's Weather Prediction Center in College Park, Maryland, said the wind won't be as punishing on Sunday as it was on Friday and Saturday.

"With the wind dying down it will probably feel significantly better although many of these areas will still be below freezing," Burke said.

Sunday afternoon's high temperatures should range from the low- to mid-20s in areas from Philadelphia to Boston. They are expected to reach the 30s and 40s on Monday and Tuesday.

Many Northeast residents endured jaw-clenching temperatures and brutal wind chills on Saturday as cleanup continued from the storm that dropped as much as 18 inches of snow in some places on Thursday.

As aviation crews at South Carolina's busiest airport, Charleston International Airport, struggled to clear runways of snow and ice so they could be reopened, in New England water main breaks, frozen hydrants and burst pipes created new problems for officials.

Hartford registered 10 degrees with a wind chill of -20, while Burlington, Vermont, was -1 degree and had a wind chill of -30.

The temperature registered -37 Saturday at the Mount Washington Observatory in New Hampshire, one of the coldest places on the planet. The wind chill was -93. It tied for second place with Armstrong, Ontario, as the coldest spot in the world.

Meteorologist Mike Carmon said people at the observatory were "layering up as a much as we can.

This article was originally published on January 07, 2018.

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