Cold Wave Continues

By Diana Alvear, ABC News, Chicago.

Winter is blasting a path of cold and ice across a large swath of the country this noon.  The deep freeze has plunged the mercury into the danger zone -- making life difficult even in places accustomed to bitter January weather.

You might think temperatures of 40 below in International Falls, Minnesota would be a boon for ice hockey. Think again.

"When the ice gets this cold, and the temperature this cold, the puck freezes  to the point where if it hits a goal post, sometimes the puck would  break into pieces," said John Prettyman a hockey coach at International Falls High School.

The mercury has fallen fast in much of the midwest in the wake of this week's second Alberta clipper, creating dangerous conditions.  Doctors treated more than a dozen people for hypothermia. At a Minneapolis hospital...

"They are extremely dangerous. You can lose your life to hypothermia and your limbs, to severe frostbite," said Dr. Doug Brunette with Hennepin County Medical Center.

The windy city lived up to its name with wind chills in the negative double  digits, making for the coldest morning in 13 years, and turning this morning's commute into a white-knuckled mess. All this winter misery is now making its way east.

"The big chunk, the center part of this storm is spreading through Pittsburgh into New York City on into Boston and some of the coldest air these areas have seen in easily five years," said Sam Champion with Good Morning America.

In Pittsburgh, the air is so dry that road salt won't melt it so plows are switching to sand.

In New York, an ill-timed water main break created a winter wonderland of frozen cars and streets.  Enough to make the hardiest person want to hibernate..

"I'm going back to florida," said a bystandard.