(SFGate) Temperatures dove more than 30 degrees below zero Thursday morning in the Midwest in this polar vortex outbreak's last gasp, driving wind chills to dangerous levels and clobbering long-standing records.
After a bitter-cold morning with temperatures that sank all the way to minus-48 in northwest Minnesota, with wind chills down to minus-65, the air ostensibly "warmed" Wednesday afternoon, to readings such as minus-18 in Grand Forks, North Dakota, and minus-22 in Rockford, Illinois. But it didn't take long into the late afternoon for the mercury to plummet again to readings well below minus-20, minus-30 and in some locations in north-central Minnesota, minus-40 by Thursday morning.
The cold snap is smashing all-time records in Northern Illinois. Moline hit a new low late Wednesday night - the lowest temperature the city has ever recorded. The weather station at the Moline Quad-City Airport sent a reading of minus-29 degrees at 11:19 p.m., which was enough to break the record, and then continued to drop even further through the early-morning hours Thursday. As of 7 a.m., the lowest temperature Moline had reached was minus-33 degrees, a full five degrees lower than the old record of minus-28 set in 1996.
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