It's a fact of life in the part of the world we live in.

Bitterly cold weather.

Things are bad enough when you wake up to actual temperature readings of -15 to -20, but things really get dangerous when the wind kicks up and the wind chills kick in.

The numbers are almost too extreme to comprehend: -40 to -50 all over the Tri-State area, prompting the National Weather Service (NWS) to issue a Wind Chill Warning through the middle part of the day Saturday (December 24).

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Wind Chill Warning
National Weather Service

And while we may think we're the only part of the country that deals with wind chills, think again.

Currently, parts of at least a dozen states are dealing with wind chill warnings (marked in gray on the map).

From as far West as Washington to as far East as Pennsylvania and as far South as Texas.

So what are wind chills?

According to Wikipedia:

It is determined by iterating a model of skin temperature under various wind speeds and temperatures using standard engineering correlations of wind speed and heat transfer rate. Heat transfer was calculated for a bare face in wind, facing the wind, while walking into it at 1.4 meters per second (5.0 km/h; 3.1 mph).

The model corrects the officially measured wind speed to the wind speed at face height, assuming the person is in an open field.

And now the most important question: how are they calculated?

Time to brush up on your math...

According to this National Weather Service:


That certainly clears it up, doesn't it?

If you're looking for an easier way, just try the handy Wind Chill Calculator on the NWS website. All you do is put in the temp and wind speed and the calculator does all of the figuring.

LOOK: The most extreme temperatures in the history of every state

Stacker consulted 2021 data from the NOAA's State Climate Extremes Committee (SCEC) to illustrate the hottest and coldest temperatures ever recorded in each state. Each slide also reveals the all-time highest 24-hour precipitation record and all-time highest 24-hour snowfall.

Keep reading to find out individual state records in alphabetical order.

A Survival Guide For Your First Winter in South Dakota

Sioux Falls, South Dakota, and the rest of the Sioux Empire (AKA southeastern South Dakota) are welcoming thousands of new residents every year.

Many of you new folks will be experiencing your first eastern South Dakota winter. While it doesn't usually get as bad as our Dakota friends up north, I speak from experience when I say it can get a little rough.

So, to help ease you into winter in Sioux Falls and South Dakota here are some winter survival tips:

The Coldest Temperatures in Sioux Falls History

When a polar vortex rolls through Sioux Falls, it can get even the heartiest dreaming of indoor fires, baking, and hot chocolate.

Mr. Bendo is tough enough but for the love of Pete, someone put a scarf on the Statue of David!

All this icy chatter had us wondering about the coldest days ever recorded in Sioux Falls. Here is the historical data from the National Weather Service with the coldest temps ever recorded in Sioux Falls since record-keeping began in 1893.

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