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Polar Vortex Strengthens, Sends Extreme Cold Temperatures Across The US

First Posted: Dec 14, 2016 03:02 AM EST

The polar vortex is sending the coldest temperature this season in years. Most areas in the United States have reported cold high temperatures since the beginning of the month of December.

This could be more extreme as it will get even colder for the rest of the week, which is expected to have below-freezing temperatures for 7 percent of the country. People are going to experience the coldest air since last winter.

The National Weather Service stated that the "polar vortex" is the large area of low pressure and cold air that surround both Earth's poles. It intensifies during the winter and can send cold air southward, according to CBS News.

The Northern Plains and upper Midwest will experience bitter cold temperature this week. In Bismarck, North Dakota, the temperature fell to 20 degrees below zero and -18 degrees in Minneapolis on Tuesday. Jamie Yucas, who reported for CBS This Morning said that these cold temperatures could cause the skin to freeze in less than 10 minutes and would raise risks of frostbite and hypothermia.

Meanwhile, CNN meteorologist Rachel Aissen said that this week's dangerous cold will sweep the country from Bismarck to Boston with -10 to -35-degree wind chills expected. She further said that at -35 degrees, wind chills take only 10 minutes for frostbite to occur

The New England will have intense cold and wind on Thursday. Snow is also expected in the Great Basin and the Pacific Northwest this week. Likewise, in Central and northern California, a possible severe rain will be experienced. About three-quarters of the country will experience freezing temperatures this week, according to CNN. 

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