The Latest: Bitter cold grips Upper Midwest, to spread east


MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — The Latest on artic cold gripping parts of the U.S. (all times local):

5 p.m.

The season’s first bitter cold spell is gripping the Upper Midwest.

People in North Dakota, Minnesota and Wisconsin were under a wind chill advisory Wednesday, as were parts of Montana, Wyoming, South Dakota, Iowa, Illinois, Indiana and Ohio.

The National Weather Service says highs ranged from 20 to 30 degrees below average in the northern U.S.

The temperature was 4 below in Fargo, North Dakota, early Wednesday. A daylight reprieve in the single digits was short-lived, with lows Thursday morning forecast to be around minus-12.

Duluth, Minnesota, is expected to have an overnight low of minus-5.

Schools and officials farther east are bracing for the icy blast to spread their way.

Connecticut Gov. Dannel P. Malloy says he’ll activate the state’s severe cold-weather protocol on Thursday, calling for state police and other agencies to work with shelters and community groups to protect vulnerable residents.

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12:05 a.m.

Arctic cold is expected to spread across the northeastern United States while the Midwest remains frigid through the work week.

The National Weather Service says much of the northern Mid-Atlantic and Northeastern states will stay cold for the next couple of days. Forecasters say the arctic air will remain stuck over the northern Appalachians.

The northern Plains and Upper Midwest will remain stuck in the deep freeze. Highs Wednesday will range from 20 to 30 degrees below average. Temperatures will remain well below zero in Minnesota and Wisconsin on Wednesday night.

The system also is expected to bring widespread snow from the Great Lakes to the Northeast on Thursday. Much of the central U.S. will be dry but cool.