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‘Polar Vortex’ Pushes Subzero Temps into Midwest

Strong winds and snow whip a flag on the porch of a home after a snowstorm hit the midwest.
Julie Denesha/Getty Images

CHICAGO (AP) — A whirlpool of frigid, dense air known as a “polar vortex” is descending into much of the U.S., pummeling parts of the country with a dangerous cold that could break decades-old records.

For a big chunk of the Midwest, the subzero temperatures are following heavy snow and high winds. Officials have closed schools in cities including Chicago, St. Louis and Milwaukee and warned residents to stay indoors and avoid the frigid cold altogether.

The forecast is extreme: 32 below zero in Fargo, N.D.; minus 21 in Madison, Wis.; and 15 below zero in Minneapolis, Indianapolis and Chicago.

Wind chills could drop into the minus 50s and 60s.

It hasn’t been this cold for almost two decades in many parts of the country.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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