Here we go again ... Brutal cold won't go away
Brainerd lakes area residents — along with others in the state — will have to brave the strong, arctic winds for a little bit longer.
The lakes area will continue to be in a wind chill warning through noon Tuesday, according to the National Weather Service (NWS). Wind chills of 35 to 45 degrees below zero began Monday, which were expected to plummet to 45 to 55 below zero overnight. There is anticipated to be a gradual improvement late Tuesday morning. Wind chills of 25 to 40 degrees below zero could linger through Wednesday morning.
“A wind chill warning means the combination of very cold air and strong winds will create dangerously low wind chill values,” the NWS reports. “This will result in frostbite and lead to hypothermia or death if precautions are not taken.”
Schools and extracurricular activities across the state were closed/canceled Monday. The ice rinks in Brainerd and Baxter also were closed Monday. Baxter’s two ice skating rinks were already scheduled to be closed on Tuesday.
Brainerd Superintendent Steve Razidlo announced about 7 p.m. that because of the frigid temperature schools also would be closed Tuesday. Pillgaer and Pine River also will be closed Tuesday.
Razidlo said the district made the correct decision to close schools on Monday and Tuesday.
“We are concerned with the wind chill,” said Razidlo, as the temperature/wind chill anticipated between 6-7 a.m. Tuesday could be between 40-50 below zero.
Anyone who has to venture outside Tuesday is advised to dress warm. Exposed skin could experience frostbite in less than 10 minutes in these arctic conditions.
Frigid temperatures also caused other headaches to certain Brainerd area residents. About 688 residents, who live southeast of Brainerd, along Highway 18, were without power early Monday morning. Crow Wing Power crews braved the cold to restore the electricity for the residents.
Char Kinzer, public relations manager, said the first report of the outage came at about 3 a.m. Monday after cold weather apparently snapped a guy-wire which then hit a transformer, causing the outage. Power was resumed to customers by 6:30 a.m.
Tuesday is expected to be mostly sunny and cold, with a high near 5 below in Brainerd. The wind chill values will be between 40 and 50 below zero. Tuesday night the wind chill values will be less gusty and be between 30 and 35 below zero.
But there is hope for Brainerd area residents. Wednesday is expected to be mostly sunny, with a high near 22 — that’s above zero. However, there is a southwest wind of 10 to 15 mph, with gusts as high as 20 mph.
The NWS service predicts temperatures in the Brainerd area will remain in the single digits through Friday. By Saturday, residents may see a high near 12.