Windchills as low as minus 33 put the St. Louis region on ice
St. Louis-area residents continue to bundle up this holiday weekend to hide from the stinging, subzero windchills brought by a massive winter storm.
The National Weather Service reports the storm on Thursday night produced the ninth-coldest windchill ever recorded in St. Louis at 33 below zero. The local record came in 1985 with a windchill of minus 48.
The historic winter storm is subjecting roughly 60% of the U.S. population to a winter weather advisory or warning Friday, leading to thousands of canceled flights and homeless shelters operating at near capacity.
Anyone notice a draft in here? 🥶🥶— NWS St. Louis (@NWSStLouis) December 23, 2022
It was brutally cold last night (not like today is much better). Here are last night's wind chills, with some comparison to a similar event from 2014. In St. Louis, this was the 9th coldest wind chill ever measured! #MOwx #ILwx #STLwx #MidMOwx pic.twitter.com/mJEC7KGDhY
At 3:30 p.m. Friday, the temperature in St. Louis was 4 degrees, with a windchill of minus 17.
"The good news is by Christmas we’ll be in the low to mid-20s," said Kevin Deitsch, a meteorologist with the NWS. "So we could go from extreme cold at the Christmas holiday to above normal by the New Year’s holidays.”
By Thursday, forecasts call for a high of 59 with rain showers.
But for now, St. Louis officials say the city continues to do street outreach to help homeless people get into shelters during the extreme cold.
Officials said that city-funded 24-hour shelters had available beds throughout Thursday night, and that there will be more space opening Friday afternoon.
St. Louis Public Library locations are also open as warming centers.
St. Louis officials say anyone in need can call 2-1-1 to be connected with available resources.
St. Louis Public Radio's Eric Schmid and Wayne Pratt contributed to this report.