Senior Robert Lautar braves the cold on his way into the Student Union December 12 at the University of Toledo's main campus.
For Dillon Appleman, an antidote to the single-digit chill that blanketed metro Toledo all day Tuesday was a brisk bit of heavy lifting.
“It keeps me warm,” Mr. Appleman said between hoisting sacks of distiller’s grains into a pickup truck on Erie Street from a back door at Black Cloister Brewing Company downtown.
“I wear layers — lots of layers,” he said. Then, after boosting another sack into the truck, he pulled off a glove to reveal a hand warmer: “These are good too.”
The distiller’s grain — meal left over when alcohol has been distilled out of corn or wheat — would be taken back to Mr. Appleman’s Deerfield, Mich., farm to be mixed into livestock feed.
The day’s high temperature at Toledo Express Airport, 5 degrees Fahrenheit, was the lowest there since the 3-degree high on Feb. 15, 2015, and a brisk southwest wind all day long made the air feel like -15 degrees or colder to exposed skin.
In Defiance and at Toledo Executive Airport in Lake Township, the high Tuesday was 4, while Findlay reached 7 and Adrian topped out at 6. Defiance had fallen to -11 at sunrise Tuesday.
National Weather Service offices in Cleveland, Detroit, and North Webster, Ind. all had wind-chill advisories posted until mid to late morning Wednesday for expected wind chills between -10 and -20 degrees.
Such wind chills can cause frostbite to exposed skin within about 30 minutes, forecasters warned.
Toledo’s morning low of -5 was reported at 10 a.m. — an unusual two hours after sunrise. Mark Adams, a meteorologist in the Cleveland office, said that occurred because the wind blew chillier air into the Toledo area from northern Indiana, where air temperatures fell early Tuesday as low as -13 in Fort Wayne and -15 in South Bend.
While Toledo’s skies were cloudy all night and for most of Tuesday morning, clearer skies over Indiana had allowed heat to escape into the atmosphere, resulting in lower air temperatures near the ground. That cooler air then blew northeast into northwest Ohio.
Northwest Ohio and southeast Michigan have been in a deep freeze since Christmas Day, when a strong cold front ushered arctic air into the region.
The official high temperature at Toledo Express has been below freezing since Christmas Eve and below 20 starting Dec. 26. And after a forecast high of 15 on Wednesday, single-digit highs are expected to return Thursday through Saturday before a warmup starts Sunday.
Mr. Adams said that warmup, which was forecast Tuesday to include temperatures above freezing on Monday, was likely to be brief.
“The jet stream is going to lift up [north] and give us a break for the Sunday-Monday timeframe, but then more arctic air pushes back in the middle of next week,” he said.
As of Tuesday, Mr. Adams said, the storm system dragging warmer air north was not expected to deliver “especially heavy” snowfall, “although that far out, things could change.”
For Robert Cruz, who paused Tuesday afternoon at Toledo’s main post office on South St. Clair Street, this week’s persistent cold was just a fact of life.
“There’s nothing we can do now,” he said. “We have to keep going ahead, thinking about the future. Spring’s just around the corner, right? And even in Texas, it’s cold right now.”
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