In all 50 states, it was below freezing in at least one spot Tuesday morning
(CNN) — Every state in the Union had a reporting station somewhere in the state below freezing Tuesday morning.
That includes Hawaii, where the temperature at Mauna Kea on the Big Island dropped to 31 degrees.
In Florida, it was in the upper 20s in the Panhandle and freeze warnings were in effect.
Tuesday was the coldest November morning since 1976, according to meteorologist Ryan Maue of WeatherBELL Analytics. The average overnight low for the Lower 48 states was 19.4 degrees, Maue said.
This is highly unusual for this time of year and is much more reminiscent of a pattern forecasters would expect to see in January or February, not November.
The Arctic air pouring over the relatively warm Great Lakes waters is producing extreme lake-effect snows.
Snow totals could approach 70 inches south of Buffalo — almost 6 feet of snow. Lancaster, New York, has already received over 40 inches of snow, and it continues to snow at 4 to 5 inches per hour. Some areas in Erie County, Pennsylvania, have already seen 3 feet of snow. Thunder and lightning have been reported.
To make matters worse, this is only the first band of heavy snow. More snow is expected on Wednesday, and then the lake-effect snow bands set up again for Wednesday night into Thursday with very heavy snow likely again. This could rank high in the history of lake-effect snow events.
Over half the country — 50.2% — had snow on the ground Tuesday morning, according to the National Weather Service.