The intense cold that descended on Kansas City yesterday and preemptively forced the closure of every public school district in Johnson County will bring the lowest windchills to the area seen in 20 years.
The National Weather Service is predicting temperatures today will bring windchills of between -25 and -40 to the region. Though the day’s high could reach 8 degrees in northeast Johnson County, the actual temperature as of 7 a.m. was -7, with a windchill of -24.
Though the temperatures are sure to shockingly bitter, they may not end up breaking any records. Kansas City hasn’t had a day where the high temperature has been 5 degrees or colder since Jan. 4, 1999, and it’s gone 8,781 days without a high temperature of 0 or below. The record low for Jan. 6 in the area is -13, set in 1912. (FWIW, the record high was 64, set in 1939).
The Weather Service is reminding people that the extreme temperatures pose a risk to people and pets who can develop hypothermia or frostbite if exposed to the elements for any extended length of time. The temperatures also increase the likelihood that water pipes in houses and fuel lines in cars could freeze.
In Johnson County, the public libraries will serve as warming centers, and are open to the public during normal business hours. For more information, call 913-826-4600.