More Arctic Cold to Flow Across Eastern US Through End of February

By By Alex Sosnowski, senior meteorologist
February 24, 2015, 2:59:47 AM EST

Additional rounds of frigid air will continue to drill the eastern United States into the end of February, riding on the heels of bursts of record-breaking low temperatures. 

By way of Siberia, additional waves of cold air will continue to roll into the Eastern states. This cross-polar flow, as it is called, travels thousands of miles across the North Pole, over frozen tundra, seas of ice and/or snow cover. As a result, the frigid air experiences little moderation until it reaches the southern U.S.

According to Chief Meteorologist Elliot Abrams, "In some cases the cold has been rivaling that of low temperature marks set during the winters of the 1970s, 1980s and 1990s."


"Washington, D.C., had their first winter month record low temperature since 1994," Abrams said.

Daily records dating back to the 1800s were broken in multiple cities Thursday into Friday from the Midwest to the East.

According to Senior Meteorologist Joe Lundberg, "Some locations in the Northeast are challenging their coldest February on record."


More waves of arctic air are coming.

"Two more big blasts of frigid air will move in through the end of the month," Lundberg said.

The first cold wave is following the storm that spread wintry precipitation along an 1,800-mile swath this weekend. The first new wave of cold air will grip the East by Monday.


A second wave of cold air is forecast to drop southeastward from Canada during the middle and latter part of the week.

While the cold waves will not be quite as extreme as that already experienced this month, they will prolong winter or delay spring weather, depending on your perspective.

"Temperatures will average 20-30 degrees below normal over a huge area from the southern Plains to New England during the first blast and then 10-20 degrees below normal over a similar area during the second blast," Lundberg said.

The first week or so of March will trend less cold, but temperatures may still average slightly below normal in part of the Midwest and much of the East.

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As cold as it has been in the East, people west of the Rockies have been basking in warmth.

As of Feb. 19, there have been approximately twice as many record highs set in the western U.S., compared to record lows in the eastern U.S., during February 2015, with roughly 1,500 versus 750.


However, that warmth will be chopped down into the last week of February.

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