Bitter Cold Winter Weather Leaves the Midwest With Arctic Temperatures

Sleet, ice and snow is the forecast from Wyoming to Ohio.

A Crow Wing County snowplow operator clears snow near Merrifield, Minn., Wednesday, Dec. 4, 2013.
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The Midwest can't seem to catch a break when it comes to the winter weather. Thursday some states' temperatures waned as much as 50 degrees bringing an arctic chill as far south as Texas.

As many as 32 million people could be affected by this winter storm that stretches from Colorado to Kentucky and southern Ohio. About one million people across the nation could lose power on account of the icy mix of freezing rain and snow.

"Just prepare, plan and hunker down once this starts later tonight," Tom Niziol, a winter weather expert for The Weather Channel, told NBC News.

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MSN News reports that Arkansas is preparing for power outages that could last days on account of the inch of ice on power lines and trees, causing many to snap.

"In some locations, a glaze of ice may span several days and last into the weekend," meteorologist Alex Sosnowski said on AccuWeather.com. "Enough ice can accumulate on trees and utility lines in these areas over several days to cause blocked roads and regional power outages."

In North Dakota wind chills are expected to drop the temperature from 10 degrees to minus 26 degrees, CNN reports.

Minnesota residents are already digging out of 3 feet of snow.

The National Weather Service reported the high for Dallas, Texas, as 80 degrees yesterday, where tonight the city is expected to reach the low 20's, with freezing rain in the forecast.

"The thermometer in my truck said 7 degrees when I was driving over here, so it's cold," Boulder resident Mani Moniek told KPLC, a local Colorado news station on Wednesday.

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Due to the 20 below forecast, Colorado homeless shelters are opening extra beds to encourage homeless people to get out of the cold.

Even sunny California is not expected to escape the cold freeze, with low-record setting temperatures possibly jeopardizing the citrus crop for many farmers, AccuWeather.com reports.

The arctic weather is expected to persist through Sunday, after which the Northeast is expected to get "the wintry stuff," Weather Channel meteorologist, Kevin Roth told NBC News.

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