The huge storm that dumped record shows across much of Texas and then moved to the Northeast also brought single-digit temperatures to Houston and Austin. It was caused by a rush of cold from Canada, and the resulting electric outages and broken water pipes may not be fixed for weeks. Temperatures were back to the 60s a few days later.
Because the U.S. ranges geographically from Maine to Florida and Alaska to Hawaii, the hottest and the coldest places across American can differ by 100 degrees. It was almost 90 degrees Fahrenheit in Augusta, Georgia, which made it the hottest place in the United States today.
In parts of Alaska, the temperature is not just below freezing, it is well below zero degrees. In one area in the northwestern part of the state, near the Chuckchi Sea, the temperature has dropped to −32 degrees. That place is Ralph Wien Memorial Airport in Kotzebue, according to El Dorado Weather.
U.S. Census data indicates that Kotzebue has a population of only 3,287, according to the American Community Survey five-year average. The residents are spread across 130 square miles. The people in Kotzebue are relatively affluent, with a median household income of $81,188, well above the national average. Oddly, the poverty rate, at 18.6% is much higher than the national number. The typical person has a short commute, with a mean travel time to work of slightly more than six minutes. The city calls itself the “Gateway to the Arctic.”
It is not unusual for the weather to be cold in Kotzebue this time of year. The average temperature range in February is about 5 degrees to −5 degrees. By the summer, the area warms considerably. In July, the average high is close to 60 degrees, with lows of about 50 degrees.
Later today, today, the wind chill will make it feel much colder. According to The National Weather Service, it will be “Partly sunny, with a high near −9. Wind chill values as low as −45. Northeast wind 10 to 15 mph.”