Central Park Hits Record Low Temperatures

1/7/14 10:10AM EST

Central Park Hits Record Low Temperatures Central Park Hits Record Low Temperatures

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Central Park is experiencing record low temperatures and the city is taking necessary precautions.

Central Park was just 4 degrees this morning after yesterday’s high of 55, the National Weather Service reports. This is the coldest the area has ever been on this date, breaking the old record of 6 degrees recorded on Jan. 7, 1896.

This is still 19 degrees from the coldest temperature ever recorded in Central Park; on Feb. 9, 1934, it reached -15 degrees.

The cold weather is being caused by a “polar vortex,” a cyclone with high winds that typically occurs near the North or South Pole. Swirls in the upper atmosphere cause extremely cold air to be pushed down toward the ground. In New York, the record low temperatures are accompanied with gusts of wind up to 50 mph.

New York City Responds And Prepares

New York City and various departments are taking precautions to deal with any possible issues, according to the New York Daily News.

The Department of Homeless Services issued a code blue alert and is trying to get as many people as possible off the streets and into homeless shelters.

Utility companies are asking workers to stay extra hours in case of power outages.

The MTA and the Port Authority are making adjustments, such as postponing construction work to make transportation more accessible.

The city has suspended alternate-side parking for today.

New York City isn’t the only area affected by the weather. Cities across the country are also experiencing chilling temperatures, and it’s affecting airlines. JetBlue temporarily halted flights in and out of New York City, Newark and Boston this morning because of cold weather conditions nationwide.

For all airlines, a total of more than 8,700 flights have been canceled in the last three days.