Governor: Frigid weather could be 'historic' in Illinois

  • A Metra train moves southbound to downtown Chicago as the gas-fired switch heater on the rails keep the ice and snow off the switches near Metra Western Avenue station, Tuesday, Jan. 29, 2019, in Chicago. Forecasters warn that the frigid weather Tuesday will get worse and could be life-threatening.

    A Metra train moves southbound to downtown Chicago as the gas-fired switch heater on the rails keep the ice and snow off the switches near Metra Western Avenue station, Tuesday, Jan. 29, 2019, in Chicago. Forecasters warn that the frigid weather Tuesday will get worse and could be life-threatening. Associated Press

  • A worker clears snow from a train at the Metra Western Avenue Yard, Tuesday, Jan. 29, 2019, in Chicago. The extreme cold and record-breaking temperatures are crawling into a swath of states spanning from North Dakota to Missouri and into Ohio after a powerful snowstorm pounded the region earlier this week.

    A worker clears snow from a train at the Metra Western Avenue Yard, Tuesday, Jan. 29, 2019, in Chicago. The extreme cold and record-breaking temperatures are crawling into a swath of states spanning from North Dakota to Missouri and into Ohio after a powerful snowstorm pounded the region earlier this week. Associated Press

  • A Metra train moves southbound to downtown Chicago as the gas-fired switch heater on the rails keeps the ice and snow off the switches near Metra Western Avenue station in Chicago, Tuesday, Jan. 29, 2019. Forecasters warn that the freezing weather Tuesday will get worse and could be life-threatening.

    A Metra train moves southbound to downtown Chicago as the gas-fired switch heater on the rails keeps the ice and snow off the switches near Metra Western Avenue station in Chicago, Tuesday, Jan. 29, 2019. Forecasters warn that the freezing weather Tuesday will get worse and could be life-threatening. Associated Press

 
 
Updated 1/29/2019 2:00 PM

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. -- Gov. J.B. Pritzker has issued a disaster proclamation ahead of forecast double-digit subzero temperatures in Illinois, calling the weather "potentially historic."

Pritzker said the "cold weather headed our way Tuesday night into Thursday morning may bring us to temperature lows that we have never seen before." Forecasters say the actual temperature could dip to 27 below zero in northern Illinois with wind chill values as low as 55 below.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

National Weather Service meteorologist Chris Miller called the frigid weather "life threatening." He says records going back to the 1800s could fall and frost bite is possible within 5 to 10 minutes.

The weather service says wind chills could reach 55 below in northern Illinois, 35 below in central Illinois and 25 below in parts of southern Illinois.

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