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Deep Freeze Spreads Across US

dateline: 07 January 2014

Pre-Listening Vocabulary

  • deep freeze: extremely cold weather conditions
  • dense: heavy; concentrated
  • frigid: very cold
  • blast: a sudden gust
  • vortex: whirling air
  • frostbite: skin damage from exposure to the cold

Deep Freeze Spreads Across US

Much of the US has slipped into a deep freeze, and many Americans are experiencing the winter weather they have ever felt. Dense, frigid air that has been trapped in the Arctic for months was released this week, resulting in a blast of cold air and snow to much of Canada and the US. The climatic phenomenon is known as a polar vortex, and is states as far south as Florida. Meteorologists have warned that these are life-threatening temperatures to anyone who gets outside or in a vehicle. When cold temperatures are combined with , frostbite can occur within minutes. The extreme weather is expected to subside by midweek as the cold air moves out to the Atlantic. Many of the affected areas can look forward to temperatures above .

Comprehension Questions

  1. What is a polar vortex?
  2. What warning have meteorologists issued?
  3. What type of weather has been forecast for midweek in the US?

Discussion Question: What supplies should vehicles be equipped with in case of winter emergencies on the road?

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Written by Tara Benwell for EnglishClub
Tara Benwell is a Canadian freelance writer and editor who specializes in materials and articles for the ELT industry.

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