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Bitter cold morning breaks long-standing records in Northeast, Midwest

Temperatures were running 30 to 40 degrees Fahrenheit below normal Tuesday morning. Temperature departure from the average is shown above in degrees Celsius. (

With just a few days left in meteorological winter, bitter cold continues in the eastern United States, where Tuesday morning lows were running 30 to 40 degrees below average from Indiana to New England. For some, it was the coldest morning on record so late in the season.

Dozens of daily record lows fell Tuesday morning, by as much as 20 degrees. A few readings have broken century-old records, including those in Pittsburgh; Akron-Canton, Ohio; Hartford, Conn.; and Indianapolis. In Rochester, N.Y., the low of minus-9 degrees tied the record set in 1889. Records in Rochester go back to 1871.

[Record low smashed at Dulles]

In addition to setting a new record low, the zero-degree reading in Bridgeport, Conn., was the coldest so late in the season. At minus-8 and minus-4, Windsor Locks, Conn., and Harrisburg, Pa., also had their coldest mornings so late in the season on Tuesday.

The western suburbs of Washington had their coldest morning in nearly two decades. Dulles International Airport set a record low of minus-4 degrees, which broke the previous record set in 1967 by 18 degrees. A little more than 100 miles west of the D.C. area, Canaan Valley, W.Va., bottomed out at minus-20 degrees.

According to the National Weather Service, 67 record lows have been broken on Monday and Tuesday.

In Syracuse, N.Y., the temperature has dropped below zero on 20 days since Jan. 1, which is a new record. The previous record of this extremely cold nature was set back in 1948.

[Chesapeake Bay ices over amid February deep freeze]

If that’s not cold enough for you, Bangor, Maine, is well on track to see its coldest month on record. Really, it is going to blow the old record out of the water by an incredible two degrees, which may not seem like much, but in the realm of monthly records, it’s a landslide.

Such was the extent of the cold that the average temperature across the Northeast was minus-16 Tuesday morning. And on Mount Washington in New Hampshire, the morning low temperature sank to minus-35 degrees, with a wind chill of minus-88.

More weather:

D.C. area forecast through the weekend

Snow possible on Thursday, but big question marks remain

Winter forecasts are about more than just a number on a map