Arctic blast across U.S. will make the ‘polar vortex’ winter look tame

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Frigid air is blasting southeastward from the Arctic, destined to turn all of the U.S. east of the Rockies — with the potential exception of South Florida — an icebox for the next week or more. This cold snap will be longer in duration and more severe than what the country experienced in January of 2014, when the term “polar vortex” caught fire on social media

Like the 2014 event, this one has its origins in the far north, with a filament of the polar vortex breaking off and slipping south, like a prisoner breaking out of jail. Such events are relatively common, but this one will bring some of the coldest temperatures in decades to parts of the country Read more…

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Cold Snap in July: Will the Real Polar Vortex Please Stand Up?

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The National Weather Service has ordered its forecasters to just quit it already with the use of the meteorological term “polar vortex” when describing a highly unusual weather event set to take place in the United States next week. This comes after some of its forecast offices, notably the Chicago forecast office in Romeoville, Illinois, promoted the event as a summer version of a polar vortex event, which famously led to that city’s coldest winter in 30 years.

The office, in an online discussion, wrote that the event will be “a July version of the polar vortex… a ‘polar vortex light’ if you will.” They even issued a graphic highlighting the term, “polar vortex.” Read more…

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