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April’s polar plunge looks as if it’ll persist

Check the calendar and it seems to be April.

Step outside and it feels a lot more like January.

This early spring polar plunge will continue Tuesday with brutal cold, but at least no snow.

The Buffalo Niagara region is forecast to wake up to wind chills in the single digits as northerly winds buffet the region behind a passing Canadian Clipper system.

Temperatures, which dipped below freezing just after 10 p.m. Saturday, are forecast to remain there through late Wednesday morning.

“This is pretty cold,” said Aaron Reynolds, a meteorologist at the National Weather Service. The temperature between 4 and 8 a.m. Tuesday was expected to dip to 16 degrees.

That would make it the coldest April 5 ever recorded at Buffalo Niagara International Airport in Cheektowaga since records started being kept there during World War II. It dropped to 17 degrees on the date in both 1975 and 1995. The all-time record in Buffalo, recorded at Buffalo Harbor, was 13 degrees set in 1881.

The high for the day is expected to be in the low 30s; the average high for the date is 50 degrees.

High pressure will build and help boost temperatures closer to average Wednesday.

“Then, the next storm system comes through with a cold front and cools us off again,” Reynolds said.

Thursday night, rain showers are forecast to turn back to snow as temperatures drop back into the 20s.

It will remain cold Friday through the weekend, too, with snow showers forecast.

Overall, plan for the first half of April to be cooler than average.“Below-normal temperatures will be the theme for the Northeast through approximately the middle of the month before a warm-up to end the month,” meteorologist Ed Vallee said on accuweather.com.

That’s a flip-flop in a pattern that had brought the 10th-warmest March to Buffalo Niagara, including a 70-degree Easter Sunday.

So far in April, more than 4 inches of snow have fallen at the airport. That’s more snow than what fell in Buffalo during the entire months of November, December and March combined.

And it makes this month the snowiest April since 2005.

The storm overnight Sunday into Monday brought anywhere from 2 to 6 inches of snow across the region.

A snowfall of 5.2 inches was reported at Wales. Other totals included: Boston, 4.5 inches; Blasdell, 4; Kenmore, Williamsville, Youngstown and Stafford, 3.5; the airport, 2.8, and Amherst, 2.5.

That wintry blast brought slick, slushy roads Monday, and several crashes dotted area highways. Also, a recycling truck driver was injured when he slipped out of his moving vehicle and became pinned against a parked car at about 9:45 a.m. on Weaver Street in Buffalo’s Kaisertown section. The driver, whose name was not released, was taken to the Erie County Medical Center for treatment.

News Staff Reporter Aaron Besecker contributed to this report. email: tpignataro@buffnews.com