Bitter cold, snow and wind chill alerts hit much of the East Coast

The Eastern half of the US remains gripped by cold after a strong front brought rain, snow and below or near freezing temperatures Wednesday, while other regions are bracing for their turn with snow.

Snow is forecast for many regions Thursday, including the Upper Midwest and the northern Great Lakes, the National Weather Service said in an advisory.

The rain and cold air that hit much of the east on Tuesday turned into snow in the Northeast and parts of the South. Some in Connecticut got more than 4 inches by Wednesday morning. Winter weather advisories were in effect for more than 20 million, including New York City, early Wednesday. Even parts of North Alabama and Mississippi got snow.

Snow was falling so heavily in the Hartford and New Haven, Connecticut area that drivers were having a hard time seeing the road, CNN affiliate WTNH reported. Down South, the National Weather Service in Birmingham, Alabama, warned drivers of black ice and slick roads.

Upper Midwest

The upper Midwest saw below-freezing temperatures Wednesday morning. Temperatures dipped to -31 degrees Fahrenheit in Baudora, Minnesota, according to the National Weather Service in Grandforks, North Dakota, citing also that the wind chill in McHenry, North Dakota, was a teeth chattering -42 degrees.

In Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, the wind chill plunged as low as -33 degrees, according to the NWS there.

“The dangerously cold wind chills could cause frostbite on exposed skin in as little as 10 minutes,”