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US winter freeze: More ice predicted before the thaw

CNN logo CNN 1/8/2018 By Ralph Ellis, Eliott C. McLaughlin and Susannah Cullinane, CNN
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Icy temperatures continue to grip the US with around a quarter of Americans under winter weather advisories Monday.

The advisories affect nearly 83 million people across the Midwest and parts of the South East, CNN meteorologist Pedram Javaheri said.

It follows a brutally cold weekend.

Javaheri said 39 record low temperatures were set on Sunday morning across the eastern US.

"JFK set one of those records with a low of 5F (-15C) Sunday morning. This broke a record of 6F (-14.4C) from the infamous Polar Vortex event just three years ago," he said.

The National Weather Service said that Sunday's lowest temperature in the contiguous US was -36F, which was recorded at Edwards, NY -- two miles north of Philadelphia, New York.

In photos: Brutal cold torments the US

Ice storm

Meanwhile, in the aftermath of last week's "bomb cyclone," an ice storm keeps hammering the Northeast. Freezing rain is spreading from the Missouri Valley through the Ohio and Tennessee valleys into parts of the Mid-Atlantic.

Ice could accumulate in cities such as Chicago, Cincinnati, Cleveland, Washington, New York and Atlanta, forecasters said. Boston has a 20% chance of snow showers Monday, the National Weather Service predicted.

Javaheri says ice coverage is generally forecast to be less than a quarter of an inch and should predominately impact travel rather than causing widespread power outages.

Track severe weather across the country

The January thaw

On the sunny side, things should warm up by midweek with temperatures across the country predicted to reach 10 to 20 degrees above average.

The NWS tweeted that a "widespread January thaw is expected for much of the country with above normal temperatures for mid-month."

California, which for weeks battled massive fires as dry weather turned much of the state into a tinderbox, will see 2 to 4 inches of rain across the state as a winter storm descends on the West Coast. Up to a foot of snow and gusty winds are forecast for the Sierra Nevadas.

In the San Francisco Bay area and much of Southern California, about 15 million people are under a flash-flood warning. While the rain is a welcome sight for many, it can spur dangerous mudslides and debris flows in burn-scarred areas, often with little warning.

The rain will be at its most intense Monday night and Tuesday morning, CNN meteorologists say.

Mudslide danger replaces fire threat in Southern California

a screen shot of a computer © CNN

Severe weather deaths

At least 22 died last week because of severe weather, officials said.

Six deaths were reported in Wisconsin, four in Texas, three in North Carolina, two in Virginia and one each in Ohio, Massachusetts, Michigan, Missouri, North Dakota, New York and South Carolina.

More than 450 flights were canceled across the country Saturday and more than 680 Sunday, according to the tracking site Flightaware.com. As of early Monday it tallied about 160 cancellations.

As US shivers, Sydney, Australia, sizzles

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