Arctic Blast Continues (Updated 515 AM 1/7)

For info on the historical records and other climate questions regarding this cold snap, click here.

Bitter cold temperatures, along with bitter cold wind chills of 15 to 25 below zero, will persist through Wednesday morning. A Wind Chill Advisory is in effect for all of southern Wisconsin through noon Wednesday.

Latest Wind Chills - Click image for larger view
Latest Wind chills across southern Wisconsin Latest wind chills across Wisconsin

This is the coldest air mass we have experienced since the arctic blast of February 1996 (about 18 years ago). 


Forecast temperatures and wind chills tonight into Wednesday:

  High Today
 

 

  Wind Chill at 
  6 AM Today

Wind Chill at
6 PM Today

 

 

Below is the regional hazards map. Click the map to see a list of all the current watches, warnings, and advisories in effect for Wisconsin.

Below is a wind chill chart (click for a larger image). Using the coldest wind chill values of 15 to 25 below zero expected tonight into Wednesday morning, frostbite will occur on exposed skin in as little as 30 minutes! 


Record and Forecast Lows and Low Maximums for 1/6 through 1/7:

Milwaukee

 

 

Date

Record Low

Observed Low

Record Low Maximum

Observed High

1/6

-18 (1912)


-14

-8 (1912)



-4
(just after midnight)

 

 

1/7 -21 (1942) -14
-10 (1942)
1


Madison

Date

Record Low

Observed Low

Record Low Maximum

Observed High

1/6

-24 (1912)

-15

-14 (1912)

 

-9
(
just after midnight)

 

1/7

-29 (1887)

-15

-9 (1942)


2

 



When was the last time Milwaukee had a low of -16 °F or lower?

The last time Milwaukee saw temperatures dip to -16 or lower was on February 4, 1996, when the low dropped to -17.  In fact, Milwaukee tied its all-time record low temperature of -26 the day before, on February 3, 1996.  This was part of a 9-day stretch of lows of 0 or lower at Milwaukee. 

Notable lows in that stretch were:  January 31, 1996 (-14), February 1, 1996 (-12), February 2, 1996 (-20), February 3, 1996 (-26) and February 4, 1996 (-19).  In fact, highs remained below zero on February 2, 1996 (-8) and February 3, 1996 (-6). 

The other occurrences of -16 or colder temperatures in the 1990s at Milwaukee were:  January 15, 1994 (-17), January 16, 1994 (-17), January 18, 1994 (-21) and January 19, 1994 (-21).


When was the last time Madison had a low of -20 °F or lower?

The last time Madison saw temperatures dip to -20 or colder was on December 25, 2000, when the low dropped to -21.  This was part of a 12-day stretch, where 11 days had lows at or below 0.  Other notable cold days in that stretch were:  December 24 (-14), December 27 (-14) and December 28 (-15). 

The other occurrences of -20 or colder temperatures in the 1990s at Madison were:  January 5, 1999 (-20), January 31, 1996 (-21), February 2, 1996 (-24), February 3, 1996 (-29), February 4, 1996 (-21), January 15, 1994 (-21), January 16, 1994 (-22), January 18-20, 1994 (-27) and January 31, 1994 (-20).  The -29 on February 3, 1996 tied for the 3rd coldest low on record at Madison.  The all-time record low at Madison is -37, which occurred on January 30, 1951.


When was the last time Madison or Milwaukee had consecutive days with high temperature less than 0 °F or lower?

The last time Milwaukee had a string of high temperatures less than 0 degrees was in 1996 (Feb. 2nd and 3rd). There have been 18 occurrences where high temperature have been less than 0 °F for at least two days or more since records started.

Madison has seen this occur more often, of which the last time Madison had a string of high temperatures less than 0 degrees was in 1996 as well (Feb. 2nd and 3rd). However, there have been 39 occurrences where high temperature have been less than 0 °F for at least two days or more since records started. 


Some additional facts...

Milwaukee Low Temperatures

  • All-time Record: -26 °F on 2/3/1996 and 1/17/1982.
  • It has been:
    •  -20 °F or colder 49 times since records began.
    • -15 °F or colder 20 times since 1980.
    • -10 °F or colder 6 times since 2000.
    • -5 °F or colder 22 times since 2000.
  • Last time it was -10 °F or colder was -12 °F on 1/6/2009.

Milwaukee High Temperatures

  • All-Time Record Low Maximum: -13 °F on 12/28/1880 and 1/15/1972.
  • It has been:
    • -5 °F or colder for a high temperature 44 times since records began.
    • -5 °F or colder 8 times since 1980.
    • 0 °F or colder 17 times since 1980.
    • 0 °F or colder 2 times since 2000.
  • Last time it was 0 °F or colder was 0 °F on 1/15/2009

 

Madison Low Temperatures

  • All-Time Record Low: -37 °F on 1/30/1951.
  • It has been:
    • -25 °F or colder 37 times since records began.
    • -25 °F or colder 8 times since 1980.
    • -20 °F or colder 26 times since 1980.
    • -15 °F or colder 8 times since 2000.
  • Last time it was -20 °F or colder was -21 °F on 12/25/2000

Madison High Temperatures

  • All-Time Record Low Maximum: -18 F on 12/23/1872.
  • It has been:
    • -10 °F or colder 24 times since records began.
    • -10 °F or colder 4 times since 1980.
    • -5 °F or colder 12 times since 1980.
    • 0 °F or colder 3 times since 2000.
  • Last time it was 0 °F or colder was -2 °F on 1/15/2009.

 

Other links:
Winter Weather Page
Hazardous Weather Outlook


Wood/MBK/ET/JPC/MRC
NWS Milwaukee/Sullivan, WI



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