Don't be fooled by Monday's warming trend. The "Polar Vortex" will bring New Jersey bitter cold temperatures overnight and into Tuesday.

Snow melting near Barnegat Bay on Monday morning (Dakota Schrantz)

Monday started off with temperatures in the 50s around the state with some areas of fog especially in north Jersey and a relatively  narrow band of heavy rain that stretched from I-195 to the New York State border

A strong cold front is pushing its way east and will cross the state during the day to start temperatures on their plummet towards the single numbers by tonight according to a briefing from the National Weather Service about the cold which will feel like the coldest weather New Jersey has had in several years.

The National Weather Service has issued a Wind Chill Advisory for all of New Jersey for Tuesday morning  as gusty winds of from the northwest at 30-40 MPH will create a wind chill of -10 to -15. Prolonged exposure to the cold and wind can lead to hypothermia and frostbite according to the advisory. Standing water will re-freeze on roadways which could cause hazardous conditions on untreated roads. There is also an increased threat of burst pipes

NJ Transit will cross honor tickets systemwide in anticipation of the cold weather on both Tuesday and Wednesday. Waiting rooms will also remain open to protect passengers from the cold. Amtrak's Northeast Corridor will offer reduced service on Tuesday between Boston and Washington D.C.

The whirlpool of frigid, dense air known as a "polar vortex" arrived Monday in much of the U.S., bringing dangerously cold temperatures that could break decades-old records from Montana to Alabama. The New York office of the National Weather Service explains in a graphic on the their Facebook page  that a "polar vortex" always exists but not something at the earth's surface or something that can observed like a tornado or cloud.

Cold Across The Country

Fans bundle up before the NFC Wild Card Playoff game between the San Francisco 49ers and the Green Bay Packers at Lambeau Field in Green Bay (Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)

Wind chill warnings stretch from Montana to Alabama. In a big chunk of the Midwest, the wind and subzero temperatures moved in behind a foot or more of snow, making travel treacherous.

In the Dakotas, where wind chills dropped to the minus-50s, drivers are being urged to carry winter survival kits in case they get stranded.

Airlines have canceled more than 1,600 flights today at Chicago's O'Hare airport, where the temperature hit a record low for the date of 16 below zero. The Chicago Transit Authority is handing out fare cards for the homeless so they can ride buses and trains to escape the cold.

School systems shut down from the Dakotas to Maryland. Indiana's Legislature postponed the opening day of its 2014 session.

The cold is being felt as far south as northern Georgia, where temperatures plunged into the 20s early today and highs in the single digits are expected tomorrow.


Temperatures in New Jersey will begin to moderate on Wednesday and should be 15 degrees warmer than Tuesday.




Tuesday morning's wind chill (NWS)