Bluefield Daily Telegraph, Bluefield, WV

January 28, 2014

Polar air bringing bitter cold to southern W.Va., Southwest Va.

By GREG JORDAN
Bluefield Daily Telegraph

BLACKSBURG, Va. — A weather pattern that usually calls the North Pole home has shifted far enough south to bring bitter cold and even more bitter wind chill factors to southern West Virginia and Southwest Virginia.

The National Weather Service in Blacksburg, Va., has issued a wind chill advisory that will continue until noon today. The advisory covers Mercer, Monroe and Summers counties in West Virginia and the Virginia counties of Bland, Giles, Tazewell and Wythe.

High temperatures between 15 and 20 degrees have been forecast for today, according to meteorologist Phil Manuel.

“Wind chills are starting off in the morning at about 10 below zero, and it looks like the coldest will be in the morning,” Manuel said. “The wind won’t be as bad in the afternoon, but when you have temperatures in the upper teens, it’s still biting out there.”

The position of a weather pattern the weather service watches all winter, the polar vortex, is usually up in the North Pole. This system has now settled over eastern Canada, between the Hudson Bay and Great Lakes area, Manuel said. Colder temperatures usually found in Canada this time of year are then funneled south to the United States.

Temperatures as low as 5 degrees are expected Tuesday night with wind chills between zero and five degrees below zero, Manuel said.