What Spring? Wind Chills Below Zero In Chicago

Temperatures in the teens on first day of Spring

By Lauren Petty and Lisa Balde
|  Wednesday, Mar 20, 2013  |  Updated 10:27 AM CDT
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    You'll have to think spring today, Chicago, because the weather isn't lining up with the calendar.

    On this official first day of the new season, temperatures of 14 and 15 degrees were recorded at O'Hare and Midway international airports with a wind chill below zero.

    An overall blustery day is expected with winds gusting to 30mph and a high of 24 degrees, which remains about 20 degrees below average.

    Morning commuters were less than pleased. “It is crazy cold. We’ve just been wrapping up and doing what we can to stay warm,” Lydia Hall said.

    Others, though, said it's all part of living in the area.

    “That’s what it’s all about in Chicago," David Mamot said. "That’s what makes Chicago, Chicago.”

    Radars also show possible snow in some areas, mainly north of I-80 where a quick burst of light showers could reduce visibilities and produce minor accumulations.

    The area can expect a very slow warm-up into the weekend with a high of 40, still well below the average high for this time of year. Last year on this day, we set a record 85 degrees.

    The normal high temperature for March 16-18 in Chicago is 47 degrees, according to the National Weather Service. In 2012, the city set four straight record high temperature days in March. March 16 had a high of 82 degrees, breaking the record high of 78 degrees set in 1945. On March 17, the recorded temperature was 81 degrees, seven degrees higher than the record set in 2009.

    Perhaps this makes up for the unseasonably winter we experienced.

    In December, Chicago entered new territory for snowlessness, breaking a record set in 1994 for the longest stretch of days without an inch of snow. In the end, the city went 355 days with no snow accumulation.

    Adding to the odd season, Chicago just missed the all-time record for warm weather in January. The mercury rose to 59 degrees before sunrise on Jan. 29, tying the previous record set back in 1914.

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