- Death toll rises amid frigid temperatures.
- Cold blankets the country
- Thousands are without electricity.
An arctic air mass from Canada is bearing down on three-quarters of the United States, placing 68 million Americans under a winter weather warning.
Cities such as New York, Philadelphia, Baltimore and Washington, DC, are experiencing the intense cold that has affected millions in recent days.
Unfortunately, low temperatures have been deadly in some areas of the country, claiming several lives.
So far 14 deaths have been related to the weather in recent days, leaving a trail of grief in various states.
Death toll rises due to arctic wave
Half of these deaths occurred in Oregon, where two people died from hypothermia, while two others lost their lives due to falling trees.
Meanwhile in Utah, a snowmobiler was hit by a truck, and in Wyoming a skier was killed by an avalanche.
Deaths continued to rise as three people fell victim to suspected hypothermia in Wisconsin.
In New Jersey, two people were killed on Tuesday when their SUV collided with a snow plow on the Garden State Parkway.
Thousands without electricity
Due to the intensity of the arctic wave, thousands of homes and businesses are without electricity, with Oregon being the most affected state.
Authorities in Texas and Tennessee have urged citizens to voluntarily reduce electricity consumption to avoid blackouts resulting from high demand.
As strong winds batter the central part of the country, wind chill alerts indicate the combination of cold and wind could be dangerous.
This has led schools to cancel classes from Detroit, Michigan to Austin, Texas.
Below zero temperatures
The situation will get worse before it gets better, as historic intense weather is forecast through Wednesday in the Plains and the South.
Even the Gulf Coast faces the possibility of temperatures well below freezing, so residents are asked to remain on alert.
It has been forecast that some areas will not be above freezing for several days.
Another blast of cold air is forecast later this week, so millions will feel temperatures falling close to freezing throughout Thursday and Friday.
Snow is forecast in some areas
Warmer weather is on the horizon, but it could be at least a week before temperatures return to near average, according to Fox Weather.
In Tennessee, snow rolled in, leaving burying nearly two dozen cars at a Nashville apartment complex.
Residents are facing extreme conditions that demand additional precautions, and authorities urge people to follow safety recommendations.
It’s predicted the snow won’t melt anytime soon, as the temperature isn’t forecast to get above freezing until Thursday afternoon.
Arctic wave causes record cold
According to climate experts, El Niño is partly to blame for the mild winter so far in the U.S.
In parts of the Cascades in the Northern Rockies you could see between 15 and 28 inches of snow according to meteorologists.
And another day of record cold was expected across much of the Rocky Mountains, Great Plains and Midwest, according to USA Today.
Wind chills below -30 degrees could extend as far south as the Mississippi Valley, weather experts say.