Winter is roaring back with a vengeance this week bringing dangerously cold temperatures before a storm, with the potential to cause significant issues with snow and ice, moves in this weekend.
Temperatures began their descent Wednesday night with brutal cold and below freezing wind chills poised to grip the region for the next several days.
"There’s parts of the area that get to wind chills to at least 15 degrees below zero," said NBC10 First Alert chief meteorologist Glenn "Hurricane" Schwartz. "That’s some serious, serious cold."
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DANGEROUS COLD RETURNS FOR DAYS
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The winds increased early Thursday with gusts between 20 and 30 mph. In some areas, wind gusts reached 40 mph. Temperatures hovered in the mid-30s with wind chills in the 20s...Until Thursday night, that is.
"The wind chills will be way below zero," Hurricane said.
By early Friday morning the wind chill dipped below zero as the temp dropped near record lows.
A record low for Philadelphia is 9, set back in 1934. The temp Friday got down to 10 degrees in the city.
"A 10 degree temperature, even with a 10 mph wind, goes below zero," he said.
After the sun rose on Friday temperatures increased into the 20s. The cold weather will continue through the weekend when a storm moves into the area.
POTENTIALLY SIGNIFICANT WINTER STORM
As the weekend progresses, a storm will move towards the area arriving by Sunday evening. Hurricane says the system will pack enough power to keep precipitation falling for more than 24 hours -- lasting into Monday night.
"This is not just a 6- to 12-hour thing, but it’s also not also going to be a nor’easter because of the lack of wind” he said.
Areas farther north of Philadelphia could see a significant amount of snow -- areas south and east will most likely start with rain or a wintry mix that will change to snow Monday. Some parts of the region could have a period of freezing rain, according to Hurricane.
"Since there will be a lot of precipitation with this storm, that is fairly certain, that means the potential is there for significant problems if the temperatures are low enough," he said.
It’s too early to offer accumulation amounts says Hurricane. He adds that new data is coming in every few hours, but what is fairly certain, according to all weather models, is that this storm has the potential to be significant.
Bitter cold temperatures are expected Tuesday with the possibility for another winter storm by the end of next week as March roars in like a lion.
NBC10.com and the NBC10 First Alert Weather Team will continue to update you with the latest information as it becomes available. Continue to check back here and NBC10 News on TV.