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Dangerously Cold Wind Chills Expected to Hit State College

by on January 07, 2015 6:00 AM

Winter is wasting no time giving us the cold shoulder.

Three days ago temperatures soared into the 40s. Since then we've seen much cooler temperatures and even some snow.

But that was only a warm up for the main act. A slice of razor sharp cold is waiting in the wings and it will be accompanied by some icy January winds. That combination will generate dangerously cold weather conditions.

The National Weather Service has issued a Wind Chill Advisory that will take effect at 1 p.m. Wednesday and last until 3 p.m. Thursday.

AccuWeather Senior Meteorologist Dave Dombek says this kind of weather is nothing out of the ordinary for January, but we're still talking about some serious cold.

Strong gusty winds will blow into the State College area on Wednesday, averaging 15 to 30 mph with gusts close to 40 mph. We're expecting a high around 18 degrees. "You're going to be looking at ... somewhere between zero and ten below on wind chills during the day," says Dombek. "

The arrival of that colder air could be accompanied by some more snow. "Pretty good chance it will kick off some snow showers," says Dombek, "maybe even a snow squall. ... When it's coming through it might look like a blizzard, reduced visibilities, snowing really hard, it might put down a quick coating to an inch of snow but then it's gone."

And Dombek expects it to get even colder Wednesday night. "We're going to drop into the single numbers, probably down to three or four above zero. With the wind blowing it's going to feel much colder than that. Wind chills Wednesday night are probably dropping down into the 10 to 15 below zero range."

In case you're wondering, we saw some similar weather conditions exactly one year ago. 

At midnight on Jan. 7, 2014 the actual temperature was nine below zero. Later that day, the high temperature was just six degrees. 

The current cold snap won't be easing up anytime soon. Thursday could be the coldest with high temperatures in the mid-teens. "Wind chills during the day will average 10, 12, 15 below in the morning," says Dombek.

Friday will be warmer but the winds could be stronger, so it might not feel much different. Saturday will be near 20 degrees. "It's going to stay cold through the start of the weekend," Dombek predicts. "The second half of the weekend, I think we do have some moderation. We might actually be getting up closer to 30 or so by the time we get to Sunday into Monday.

The best advice from the folks at Accuweather is to dress in layers, wear a hat and use common sense -- don't stay outside any longer than you have to.

Click HERE for the latest AccuWeather forecast.

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Steve Bauer was the Managing Editor of Steve and his wife Trina are longtime area residents. They reside in State College along with a wacky Golden Retriever named Izzy.
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