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Extreme cold hits Massachusetts Saturday ahead of heavy rain, snow Sunday night

Expected snowfall totals for a storm that will move through Massachusetts Sunday night into Monday morning.National Weather Service

Single-digit temperatures, subzero windchills, and snow on the way. It’s winter in Massachusetts, all right.

Frigid wind blowing across Massachusetts Saturday made most of the state feel like it was below zero.

Windchills in Pittsfield put an icy grip on the city at minus 22 degrees at 10 a.m., while gusts caused temperatures to feel like minus 5 in Falmouth, minus 15 in Worcester, and minus 17 in Lawrence, according to the National Weather Service.

Boston’s temperature of 6 degrees at 10 a.m. felt more like a frosty minus 13 amid a cold emergency Mayor Michelle Wu declared in the city for Saturday.


By 5 p.m., Boston felt only a tad warmer with a windchill of minus 4.

Because of the extreme temperatures, Wu urged residents to take proper precautions and head to warming centers at Boston Centers for Youth & Families’ community centers if they need a place to get out of the cold.

“We’re working quickly to make sure all of our residents and families are protected during this weekend’s extremely cold weather,” Wu said in a statement Friday. “I urge all Boston residents to stay warm and safe, and check on your neighbors during this cold emergency.”

Wu said to check on those who are vulnerable to the cold specifically, such as the elderly, people with disabilities, and those experiencing homelessness.

High winds were a concern for parts of the state Friday, with the weather service reporting wind speeds around 65 mph in Barnstable Friday evening. Gusts were slower Saturday morning, but weather service meteorologist Kristie Smith said that won’t help much with the freezing temperatures.

“Today is just going to be really cold,” Smith said.

Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority spokesman Joe Pesaturo said none of the service’s lines were affected by the high winds or cold weather Friday night or Saturday morning.


Massachusetts saw “dry but frigid and bitterly cold windchills” Saturday, according the the weather service, and even lower temperatures could hit some parts of the state Sunday.

Coastal areas are forecast to be a bit warmer Sunday morning, with Boston reaching 9 degrees, but inland Massachusetts will see temperatures fall below zero overnight, Smith said.

“Waking up Sunday morning is going to be a lot colder for those places,” Smith said. “It will reach minus 7 in Bedford overnight when it was 5 degrees there [Saturday] morning.”

By nightfall Sunday, a storm is expected to move across the Commonwealth and last into Monday morning.

Potential hazards that could be seen during a storm that is expected to hit Massachusetts Sunday night into Monday morning.National Weather Service

Smith said the storm could drop 2 to 6 inches of snow in central Massachusetts and 6 to 8 inches in the Berkshires, while coastal areas are expected to get heavy rain.

There is a slight chance for snow before 2 a.m. in Boston Monday morning, then rain after 3 a.m., the weather service said. Temperatures in the city are expected to rise to around 40 degrees by 5 a.m. with wind gusts possibly reaching as high as 36 mph.

The weather service said it expects to see showers and a chance of heavy rain during the day and evening in Boston Monday.

Strong to damaging winds along with flooding could hit the coast during the storm, according to the weather service.

Wind speed overnight Saturday won’t be as high as they were Friday, Smith said. But Sunday’s storm could cause some damage on the coast. Smith said gusts on Cape Ann and Cape Cod could reach 60 to 70 mph during the storm.


Areas along the coast could see some flooding during a storm that moves through Massachusetts Sunday night into Monday morning.National Weather Service
High wind gusts are expected along the coast Sunday night.National Weather Service

“It certainly wouldn’t be surprising to wake up without power Monday morning because of the high winds,” Smith said. “It’s not out of the question.”

Cold weather could return to Boston again Tuesday, but with a potential high of 29 degrees, the weather service said.

Boston will warm up more Wednesday, when temperatures could rise to a high of 40 degrees, according to the weather service.

Caroline Enos can be reached at caroline.enos@globe.com. Follow her on Twitter @CarolineEnos.