CHICAGO (AP) — The Latest on a major snowstorm and frigid weather in the Midwest (all times local):
Temperature records have been broken in northern Illinois amid the artic deep freeze enveloping the Midwest.
The National Weather Service says the temperature Thursday morning in Rockford hit a record-breaking negative 30 degrees (negative 34 Celsius).
The previous record of negative 27 degrees (negative 33 Celsius) was set on Jan. 10, 1982. The city’s records date back to 1905. Rockford is about 80 miles (129 kilometers) northwest of Chicago.
Meteorologists say warmer weather is on the way for the weekend.
Another day of dangerously cold weather in the Midwest is closing hundreds of schools, businesses and government offices in Wisconsin and Minnesota, but students are heading back to school in the Dakotas.
Two of Wisconsin’s largest school districts canceled classes again Thursday, when morning temperatures hovered around negative 20 degrees (negative 29 Celsius). In Minnesota, where wind chill readings could reach negative 55 degrees (negative 48 Celsius), several large school districts also called off classes.
The extreme cold has also sent dozens of people to hospitals in Minnesota. Hennepin Healthcare in Minneapolis says it has treated 22 patients for frostbite since Friday, including 13 admitted to the hospital.
But in North Dakota, students in Fargo and other nearby cities are heading back to school. Temperatures in the region dropped to minus 25 degrees (minus 31 Celsius) Thursday morning but forecasters are predicting a high of minus 2 degrees (minus 16 Celsius).
It’s a bit warmer in South Dakota, where the National Weather Service says the high temperature in Sioux Falls on Thursday is expected to be 12 degrees (minus 11 Celsius).
The painfully cold weather system that put much of the Midwest into a historic deep freeze is expected to ease Thursday, though temperatures could still tumble to record lows in some places before the region begins to thaw out.
Disruptions caused by the cold will persist, too, including power outages and canceled flights and trains.
Before the worst of the cold begins to lift, the National Weather Service says Chicago could hit lows early Thursday that break the city’s record of minus 27 set on Jan. 20, 1985.
Temperatures should bounce back into the single digits later Thursday and into the comparative balmy 20s by Friday. More people are expected to return to work in Chicago, which resembled a ghost town Wednesday after most offices told employees to stay home.