Some of the sting is expected to come out of the cold snap today, but temperatures in Kansas City are expected to remain below freezing until Saturday. That would be a stretch of two weeks below 32.
That’s a long time of bitter cold for Kansas City, but even at 14 days it would not be in the top 10 longest periods below 32, according to the National Weather Service. Tuesday was the 10th straight day below 32. The record is 20 days at the end of 1983. There were runs of 13 days in 2010 and 2014 and one of 18 days in 2001.
Potentially dangerous wind-chill values appear to have passed at least for now. The rest of the week looks clear and cold: A high today of 20 and low tonight of 3, followed by 19/9 Thursday and 28/12 Friday. Relief comes with the weekend: 37 Saturday and 45 Sunday, with a chance of rain and snow. Snow is not expected to accumulate.
Despite closing on a cold note – it was 6 below zero at KCI when the new year was rung in – temperatures in December were on the whole slightly above average in Kansas City. There was even a record-high day – 72 on Dec. 4.
But the week between the holidays – Dec. 25 to 31 – was a second coldest on record, with an average of 12.4 degrees. Only 1983 was colder in the 125-plus years of officials record-keeping in Kansas City.
The heavy rain that came at a point last summer when it usually gets very dry helped push the area to a higher-than-average total precipitation for the year, 46.02 inches. That’s 7.02 inches above average though nowhere near the record, 60.25 inches, set in 1961. In 2017, record daily rainfall came on two days, 2.94 inches on July 27 and 4.08 inches on Aug. 22.
Other daily records: The high of 72 on Dec. 4, and lows of 52 on Aug. 4 and Aug. 5 and 46 on Sept. 4 and 5/