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Below average temperatures this week

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — After some spurts of mild temperatures over the past few weeks, well below average temperatures have settled in across much of the country. Is this unusual for this time of year? Let’s take a look at some of the statistics.

First, here’s why it’s so cold. There’s a big dip in the jet stream across the eastern half of the United States. That allows for much colder air from the north to fill in north of it. With a blocking pattern in place over the north Atlantic, there isn’t much movement with this pattern, which creates little change in the chilly pattern over the extended period.

Freeze watches and warnings are in place across much of the Midwest, but also extend into the Mid-South. Along some Gulf Coast states, frost advisories are in effect through Wednesday morning.

The chilly air is widespread, stretching from the Rockies to the Atlantic Coast, and as far south as the U.S./Mexico border.

Many record lows will be in jeopardy across the Plains and upper Midwest. Here in central Indiana, we won’t likely hit record territory but it will be close Wednesday and Thursday morning.

As we’ve mentioned several time over the past several weeks, this type of cold in April isn’t unusual. Our average last freeze date is April 16, and we’ve had freezing temperatures as late as the end of May.

If you’re looking for some good news, a combination of models that meteorologists look at (we refer to this product as the NBM – national blend of models), shows milder air returning to the the state by the early and middle portions of next week.