STEUBENVILLE - Get ready for a blast of arctic air early next week as the coldest temperatures of the winter season are headed into the area.
The National Weather Service is calling for a high of 14 on Monday, but the temperature Monday night will drop to 13 degrees below zero. The high on Tuesday is only going to climb to around zero and then fall to about 3 below zero at night.
Brad Rehak, a weather service meteorologist in the Moon Township, Pa., office, said Friday afternoon an unusually strong arctic front will bring the frigid temperatures. He said the coldest air of the winter usually occurs around the middle of January.
FRIGHTFUL TASK — With the temperature a frightful 3, Drue Ford shovels snow wearing a face mask to guard against frostbite Friday in Brunswick, Maine. - Associated Press
Rain will turn to snow Sunday night, with about 1 to 3 inches of snow expected into Monday morning, Rehak said. Snow on the ground could lead to temperatures being colder.
"It will refrigerate the air mass," he said.
The temperature on Wednesday will climb to about 20 degrees during the day, with sunny skies and warmer temperatures of around 35 by Friday.
Temperatures were above normal in December. Rehak said the forecast trend for the weeks ahead calls for more normal temperatures.
The coldest temperature recorded by the weather service in Moon Township was 22 degrees below zero on Jan. 19, 1994. The record for the temperature being zero or below was a 52-hour period beginning on Jan. 18, 1994.
Even if the temperature dips to 13 below zero on Monday night, it still won't put it in the top 10 coldest days on record for the Pittsburgh area, according to the National Weather Service.