OSKALOOSA — Temperatures are expected to warm a bit started Wednesday, but it’s not time to trade coats for shorts quite yet.
A wind chill warning remains in effect until Tuesday morning from the National Weather Service as part of an arctic blast that is impacting states from the Canadian border to the Mexico border.
After a slight chance of some snow with minimal accumulations expected, the high on Wednesday is expected to be around 17 degrees. The low that night is 2 degrees, according to a forecast by the National Weather Service.
Temperatures will dip again Thursday night at minus 3 degrees for a low. Then, a relative heatwave for the weekend: highs of 17 degrees Friday, 29 degrees Saturday and a balmy 34 degrees on Sunday.
The frigid temperatures can be dangerous for those who are outside. On Monday morning the wind chill in Oskaloosa dipped to minus 29 degrees Monday morning. At that temperature, frostbite can occur in less than 30 minutes.
MidAmerican Energy encouraged customers on Monday to temporarily reduce their natural gas usage, saying frozen wells in the southern United States has impacted supply in the midwest. A press release says systems were operating as expected, but supply could become an issue.
Alliant Energy hadn't yet made that request, but on Monday afternoon tweeted tips to lower energy consumption, and reminded customers to make sure exterior vents and gas meters are cleared of snow and ice.
Forecasters believed the wind chill would bottom out again overnight Monday into Tuesday at about minus 23 degrees, and then dip down to minus 19 degrees between Tuesday and Wednesday, before rising throughout the day on Wednesday.
The frigid conditions extend south into Texas, where an ice storm knocked out power to more than two million people, the Associated Press reported.
San Antonio had temperatures into the single digits as rotating blackouts occurred to throttle power consumption.
Several cities in the U.S. saw record lows as Arctic air remained over the central part of the country. In Minnesota, the Hibbing/Chisholm weather station registered minus 38 degrees, while Sioux Falls, South Dakota, dropped to minus 26.
In Kansas, where wind chills dropped to as low as minus 30 degrees in some areas, Gov. Laura Kelly declared a state of disaster.
By midmorning, 3,000 flights had been canceled across the country, about 1,600 of them at Dallas/Fort Worth International and Bush Intercontinental airports in Texas. At DFW, the temperature was 4 degrees — 3 degrees colder than Moscow.
The southern Plains had been gearing up for the winter weather for the better part of the weekend. Texas Gov. Greg Abbott issued a disaster declaration for all of the state’s 254 counties. Abbott, Oklahoma Gov. Kevin Stitt and Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson each activated National Guard units to assist state agencies with tasks including rescuing stranded drivers.
President Joe Biden also declared an emergency in Texas in a statement Sunday night. The declaration is intended to add federal aid to state and local response efforts.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.