How cold? So cold we broke a record

Photo courtesy of © Can Stock Photo / rjcphoto

It was so cold in Windsor Wednesday morning, the city broke a record.

The record, set in 1951, was -20.6 C. The temperature dipped to -21.8 C.

“And you ain’t seen nothing yet because the forecast is going to get worse for cold temperatures,” said Environment Canada Meteorologist Gerald Cheng.

Windsor could break another record early Thursday morning as the thermometer falls to -27 C. With winds coming out of the southwest at 40 kilometres per hour and gusts of up to 60 km/h, the windchill will make it feel like -40 C.

The record for January 31 is -20.6 C, set in 1971.

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Cheng stressed there is a danger with cold temperatures like these. Frostbite can happen within just minutes on exposed skin.

“When we talk about windchill values down into the -30s, we talking about anywhere from ten to 30 minutes,” he said. “If we reach -40s than we’re talking about five to 10 minutes.”

While Windsorites are not used to the freezing cold like some other Canadians, take heart. It could be worse.

Collins Bay, Saskatchewan is -45 C with a windchill of -51 C.

It will warm up later this weekend. Cheng said Windsor could expect to reach -1 C on Saturday and even surpass the freezing mark on Sunday.

“I don’t want to overpromise because every time there’s a warm-up, there’s always precipitation. It’s either snow or rain,” said Cheng. “The price to pay for that is unsettled weather.”