Temperatures plunge across the Northeast

Many towns, cities report record below-zero lows

January 11, 2004|By Thomas S. Mulligan | Thomas S. Mulligan,LOS ANGELES TIMES

NEW YORK - Some of the coldest weather in decades has clamped down on the Northeast, driving the homeless into shelters and causing even hardy New Englanders to think twice about walking the dog.

Temperatures fell below zero yesterday in many parts of the Northeast as an arctic cold front swept in from Canada. In most areas, there was little or no snowfall to compound the misery, but the clear skies only helped make things colder.

Two people died of hypothermia in Boston, including a man found frozen on a park bench.

A reading of minus 3 degrees at Boston's Logan Airport broke a record set in 1875, according to the National Weather Service. A reading of 2 degrees above zero at New York's La Guardia Airport was a 10-year low.

Other record lows included 19 below zero at Montpelier, Vt.; 16 below at Syracuse, N.Y.; 7 below at Scranton, Pa.; and 2 below at Bridgeport, Conn., according to the National Weather Service.

Rochester, N.Y., had its coldest morning since Jan. 16, 1994, with a record 12 degrees below zero.

New York Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg doubled the number of housing inspectors responding to complaints about lack of heat and hot water. More than 2,100 such complaints had been received by yesterday afternoon, officials said.

Members of the Coney Island Polar Bear Club went ahead with their customary dip in the frigid Atlantic yesterday.

Meanwhile, 200 miles north, fans of the New England Patriots poured into Gillette Stadium in Foxboro, Mass., for the team's Saturday night National Football League playoff game against the Tennessee Titans.

In a concession to the single-digit temperatures, the team relaxed its usual security strictures and allowed fans to carry blankets inside the stadium.

The Los Angeles Times is a Tribune Publishing newspaper. The Associated Press and Times staff writer Elizabeth Mehren contributed to this article.

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