Wind chill, winter weather advisory still in place for Metro Detroit -- what to know

4Warn Weather – We are waking up to very cold temperatures and wind chills this Christmas Eve Day.

Actual air temperatures are in the low-to-mid single digits (-15 to -17 degrees Celsius), but winds still gusting near and even above 40 mph have pushed wind chills down into the -15 to -25 degree range (-26 to -32 degrees Celsius). That is dangerously cold if you are not dressed appropriately to be outside, or if your car breaks down and you’re stranded. We’ll see only modest temperature improvement this afternoon, with highs in the mid-teens (-9 degrees Celsius), and wind chills rising to around zero (-18 degrees Celsius) this afternoon. Southwest to west winds at 20 to 30 mph and gusts to 40 mph possible.

As for snow, the Lake Michigan lake effect snow machine is still cranking, and some of those bands still have the potential to expand eastward across the state. The best opportunity for this is in the Thumb, but some high-resolution models do place another band over the southern part of the area. It may snow pretty robustly under these bands, with an inch possible if any band is stationary for a few hours. But if you aren’t in this band today, you’ll probably get nothing worse than some flurries or light snow showers with no accumulation. Keep an eye on the 4Warn Weather App’s real-time radar to see if and where those bands are set up.

The National Weather Service has issued two advisories until 7:00 p.m. today: a Wind Chill Advisory for areas generally south of 8 Mile, where it will be coldest, and a Winter Weather Advisory north of 8 Mile, where the best potential for blowing snow will add to the wind chill hazard.

Today’s sunrise is at 8:00 a.m., and today’s sunset is at 5:06 p.m.

Christmas Eve itself should be mostly dry but still bitterly cold, with evening temperatures in the mid-teens (-9 degrees Celsius) and wind chills near zero (-18 degrees Celsius).

Christmas Day should be dry as well, with mostly cloudy skies. Temperatures may actually just squeak past 20 degrees (-6 degrees Celsius). It’ll still be breezy, but not as windy as Friday and Saturday, with west winds at 10 to 20 mph and gusts to 30 mph possible. That’ll push wind chills generally between zero and 10 above (-18 to -12 degrees Celsius).

Next week is a vacation week for a lot of people, so here’s my outlook for the entire week:

Monday: Cloudy, with highs near 20 degrees (-7 degrees Celsius). A bit of light snow may graze Lenawee and Monroe Counties Monday as a compact system tracks southeastward toward us, but remains west of us and, eventually, south of us. I expect little to no accumulation.

Tuesday: Partly cloudy, with highs in the mid-20s (-4 degrees Celsius). What a great day for skiers!

Wednesday: Mostly cloudy, warmer and becoming breezy. Highs in the upper-30s (3 to 4 degrees Celsius).

Thursday: Continued warming, but with rain showers likely. Highs in the mid-40s (8 degrees Celsius).

Friday: Cloudy, with a slight rain shower chance. Highs near 50 degrees (10 degrees Celsius).

New Year’s Weekend: Next weekend looks wet, with a good chance for rain or rain showers on Saturday, and at least a chance on Sunday. At least it’ll still be mild, with highs near 50 degrees (10 degrees Celsius)!

About the Author:

Local 4 meteorologist Paul Gross was born in Detroit and has spent his entire life and career right here in southeast Michigan. Paul has researched, written and produced eight half-hour documentaries for WDIV, as well as many science, historical and environmental stories.