Thursday, January 24, 2013

Brutal cold continues

Montreal firefighters deal with a water main break yesterday morning at Galt and Wellington in Verdun. (CTV News).
Temperatures have eased only slightly in the Montreal area up from lows of -28C yesterday morning to around -25C this morning. However northwest winds have increased across southern Quebec into the 30-50km/h range which will lower windchill values back down close to -40C at times. A windchill warning is in effect across eastern Ontario and into most of Quebec. The warning also extends into New Brunswick, PEI and south across New England.

Today will be bitterly cold once again with forecast highs of -17C under fair skies, but I would not be surprised if we do not break -20C. Like yesterday gusty winds during the daylight hours will make the cold feel extreme. The high on Wednesday at my home was only -23C, after an overnight low of -28C. For comparison, yesterday the coldest spot in the country was Key Lake, Saskatchewan at -40C with windchill values in the -50C range. Meanwhile at one point yesterday the observatory at the top of Mount Washington, New Hampshire recorded a temperature of -34F with winds of 75mph and windchill values in the -87F range...just brutal cold. It continues crazy cold up there this morning with winds of 75mph and a current temperature of -23F (WC -68F).

Hydro-Qu├ębec said the province broke a record for energy consumption yesterday morning when the level hit 38,910 megawatts. The previous record was 37,717 megawatts, recorded on Jan. 24, 2011. They are asking us all to conserve energy where we can. Adding to the cold blues are power outages, water main breaks and numerous stalled cars and accidents on area highways. Best advice as always slow down and watch for lots of black ice. Keep your gas tank full. The cold will ease as we head into the weekend with a warming trend expected early next week.

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