Extreme cold weather brings -62 C wind chill to Iqaluit

Environment Canada issued extreme cold weather warnings for Iqaluit, Clyde River and Pond Inlet today, warning of extreme wind chill values of -50 C to -60 C.

'Little change is expected in this weather pattern,' says an Environment Canada weather alert

Ice fog over Iqaluit on Monday, Jan. 26. Environment Canada issued extreme cold weather warnings for Iqaluit, Clyde River and Pond Inlet Monday. (Kevin Kablutsiak/CBC)

Environment Canada issued extreme cold weather warnings for Iqaluit, Clyde River and Pond Inlet today, warning that temperatures around the -40 C mark combined with winds anywhere from 15 to 40 km/h have been giving extreme wind chill values of -50 C to -60 C. 

Iqaluit resident Alethea Arnaquq-Baril woke up to find this shocker on her phone. (submitted by Alethea Arnaquq-Baril)
"Little change is expected in this weather pattern," the weather alert says. 

A separate warning for Hall Beach, Nunavut, has since been lifted. 

In Iqaluit, schools and daycares were closed due to the extreme cold. The city pulled its sewage and water trucks off the road, and many found their cars wouldn't start. 

"Today the biggest challenge is getting the men to work because none of the trucks would start," says Keith Couture, of Iqaluit's public works department. "Basically we're going around boosting a lot of the men even though their vehicles for the on-call people were plugged in."

Tow trucks circulated constantly and plenty of motorists had to rely on good Samaritans to boost their car batteries.

Taxi drivers also had to up their game as many people who normally walk to work decided not to risk frostbite.

"We were very busy. On top of a lot of cars not starting...every day like this would be very hard, but a day like this was exciting for me," says taxi driver Ronnie McGregor. "And we provided good service, there were people waiting outside, we still managed to get those people."

One person tried an experiment to see how quickly a tray of ice cubes would freeze outdoors. 

The verdict? About 30 minutes. 

Paige Nicholls in Iqaluit shared her video of tossing a cup of boiling water in the air at a wind chill of -67 C. 

Another Iqaluit resident expressed his own shock at the cold posting this selfie.  

Richard Paton posted a photo of himself walking to work in Iqaluit in temperatures that reached into the -60s with the wind. (Richard Paton/Facebook)


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