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Special WeatherTalk: Dangerous Weather Should be Treated Seriously (January 29-31)

Dangerous Weather Should be Treated Seriously (January 29-31):

The next 48 hours (Tuesday midday to Thursday midday) will bring temperatures and Wind Chill conditions that are serious threats, the most severe conditions on a statewide basis since those of late January and early February in 1996 across Minnesota.  Even in a broader historical context these severe conditions are quite rare having occurred about once every 10 to 12 years over the past 120 years of record keeping.
Perhaps the one place on Earth where cold weather is taken most seriously as a health risk is Antarctica.  At the Amundsen-Scott South Pole station this week Wind Chill values will be in the minus 20s and minus 30s F.  We will have colder conditions here in Minnesota.  Below is a chart of projected Wind Chill conditions from the National Weather Service.

According to NOAA-National Weather Service guidelines from the medical profession exposed human flesh can freeze in 10 minutes with Wind Chills of 35 below zero (F) or colder and in 5 minutes with wind chills of 50 below zero (F) or colder.  But bear in mind that localized conditions can vary tremendously, easily plus or minus 10 degrees F from what is reported by the National Weather Service.  Under these circumstances even brief exposures due to running errands, doing chores outside, walking the dog, taking out the trash, etc can be risky if something goes wrong and your exposure time is unexpectedly lengthened.  So caution should be a hard and fast rule.  Don’t hesitate to check on friends, neighbors, and relatives as well.

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Anonymous said…
Your remarks are as prescient and informative as ever, Mark. You do Minnesotans a great service. Thank you so much! I will heed your warnings.
Unknown said…
If we reach -28 as forecasted it will be my coldest min. temperatures at my NewHope co.op. station since the -29 on Feb.1,-33 on Feb. 2, and -29 on feb. 3,1996.

Steve Reckers, coop obs. New Hope