Frigid Air, High Winds Sweep the Northeast; at Least 6 Dead

January 21, 2019 Updated: January 21, 2019

CONCORD, N.H.—Falling temperatures replaced the weekend’s falling snow Jan. 21 as bitter cold and gusty winds swept across the eastern United States.

The National Weather Service had forecast that temperatures would be more than 20 degrees below normal across the Northeast, with wind gusts up to 30 mph and wind chills approaching minus 40 degrees Fahrenheit in northern New York and Vermont.

Atop the Northeast’s highest mountain, the temperature fell to minus 23 degrees Jan. 21 morning and dropped to minus 31 later in the afternoon, according to the Facebook page for Mount Washington Observatory, in New Hampshire. Wind chills were hovering around minus 80.

In New York, Coast Guard crews moved quickly to rescue a 21-year-old man left stranded on an island in the Navensink River after his small boat broke down. The Coast Guard said two members waded through 34-degree water to bring the man to safety. The air temperature was 7 degrees with 30 mph wind.

Winter Weather in Canada
A temperature of -7 degrees Fahrenheit was shown at the Bank of America Financial Center on Sate Street, against a backdrop of the New York State Capitol on Monday morning, Jan. 21, 2019, in Albany, N.Y. (Will Waldron/The Albany Times Union via AP)

The weather contributed to multiple deaths over the long Martin Luther King Jr. holiday weekend.

In suburban Chicago, the temperature was about 14 degrees Jan. 20 when a 12-year-old girl died after a snow fort collapsed on her. Police in Arlington Heights, Illinois, said Esther Jung had been playing with another girl outside Rothem Church. Their families began looking for them about an hour later and found them under the snow. The younger girl survived.

Winter Weather in Canada
Jeff Maguire digs out his driveway in Carleton Place, Ontario on Monday, Jan. 21, 2019. (Sean Kilpatrick/The Canadian Press via AP)

In Connecticut, a utility company subcontractor died Jan. 20 after being struck by a falling tree while working on a power line in Middletown. Thousands of homes and businesses in Connecticut remained without power Jan. 21 afternoon as temperatures dropped below zero in some locations.

“This is a reminder of the danger these men and women face on our behalf,” Gov. Ned Lamont said in a tweet. “While many are still out there working today, please join me in acknowledging them and sending our thoughts to this person’s family.”

Winter Weather in Canada
Marvin Hooks wears a face mask to protect him from the cold as he walks on North Street in Pittsfield, Mass., Monday, Jan. 21, 2019. Bitter cold and gusty winds swept across the eastern U.S. Monday with falling temperatures replacing the weekend’s falling snow. (Ben Garver/The Berkshire Eagle via AP)

In Kansas, a snowplow driver was killed when the plow drove onto the shoulder of a road and rolled over, throwing him under the vehicle. It wasn’t clear why the driver had moved to the shoulder from the roadway. And in Wisconsin, the Milwaukee County Medical Examiner’s Office said a 59-year-old man and a 91-year-old man collapsed and died Jan. 20 in separate incidents after removing snow.

A man in charge of transportation at a southwestern Michigan school district also died while shoveling snow. Portage district officials said Mike Westbrook died Jan. 19 from a heart attack.

Winter Weather in Canada
Steam comes off the Mississippi River in Carleton Place, Ontario on Monday, Jan. 21, 2019. (Sean Kilpatrick/The Canadian Press via AP)

FlightAware reported hundreds of delayed flights Jan. 21. And after a few weather-related delays Jan. 20, Amtrak restored all scheduled service Jan. 21.

Another storm system is already developing over the Rockies that could blanket the same region with more snow by the end of the week.

By Holly Ramer 

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