Approximately one-quarter of the United States is now under the grips of a deadly Polar Vortex that has rendered the city of Chicago literally colder than Antarctica or Siberia, with temperatures hitting a record-setting 21 degrees below zero and a windchill of 51 below. Meanwhile, temperatures in Minneapolis reached 28 degrees below zero with a wind chill of minus 49.
The National Weather Service warned of “life-threatening wind chills, likely leading to widespread record lows and low maximum temperatures” due to the arctic air mass intrusion which is currently surging south into the Upper Midwest, which will eventually spread across the eastern two-thirds of the country later this week. Experts are warning those located in the worst of it not to breathe deeply or talk outside for fear of their lungs freezing, and frostbite can set in within minutes. Those who are fortunate enough to be able to remain indoors are obviously best off doing so. Schools and colleges have temporarily closed in many parts of the Midwest, and the Postal Service has effectively canceled Wednesday mail delivery in parts of at least 10 states out of concerns for the safety of employees.
Even those who remain indoors are experiencing the effects of the Polar Vortex, however, as the ice creeps into homes through doorknobs and windows like something straight out of Game of Thrones — which you can see from some of the photos and videos being shared on Twitter.
Others are doing the boiling water trick to demonstrate just how cold it is outside:
And then of course there were the inevitable memes:
Stay warm and safe, everyone.