(Bloomberg) — Record-setting cold is gliding through the central U.S. and will seep to the East Coast Thursday before temperatures rebound and return to spring-like conditions this weekend.
Wednesday’s cold has already set a record for the date in Oklahoma City with readings dropping to 29 degrees Fahrenheit (minus 2 Celsius) and other low marks will likely fall through as reports come in, said Marc Chenard, a senior branch forecaster with the U.S. Weather Prediction Center. Temperatures in New York will dive from a high of 65 degrees during the day to 36 degrees Wednesday night.
“It is near record to record cold from Iowa and Minnesota all the way to Texas this morning,” Chenard said. “By tomorrow morning temperatures in the 30s will be all the way to the East Coast.”
Freeze warnings stretch from eastern New Mexico to southern Connecticut as the chill advances, the National Weather Service said. The cold has likely caused some damage to heading wheat in Texas and Oklahoma, said Don Keeney, a meteorologist with Maxar. Early corn crops in the Mississippi Delta might also be hurt by the freeze and require some replanting.
For the most part, the agriculture losses won’t be too dramatic because it is still early in the season, Keeney said. Farmers have plenty of time to replant any crops that are lost.
The good new is the cold will be short-lived and temperatures will start to recover by the weekend.
“The core of the cold is today into Thursday,” Chenard said.