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When the clock strikes midnight to ring in 2018, the temperature in Metro Detroit is expected to be a bone-chilling zero degrees, ushering in the new year with the same brutal cold that’s gripped the final week of 2017, according to the National Weather Service.

Relentless cold air will continue surging into big swaths of the nation through the first week of 2018, including Metro Detroit.

“There’s not much break in sight,” Dave Gurney, meteorologist at the National Weather Service’s office in White Lake Township, said on Thursday.

This cold is likely to be the nation’s most extreme since February 2015, according to the weather service. It’s producing dangerously low temperatures and wind chills over much of the central and eastern United States.

In southeast Michigan, temperatures are 20 degrees lower than normal, which is about 33 degrees for highs and 21 degrees for lows. Instead, the area is dealing with highs in the low-to-mid teens and lows around zero degrees. And then there’s the sub-zero wind chill.

On Thursday morning, the temperature at Detroit Metro Airport in Romulus had sunk to minus 3 degrees — that’s one degree from the record low of minus 4 degrees set in 1924. The finals days of 2017 will be a lot like the record lows of 1924. The high for Thursday is expected to be 14 degrees.

Until at least New Year’s Day, expect highs in the low-to-mid teens and lows in the zero-degree range with sub-zero wind chill.

laguilar@detroitnews.com

Twitter: @LouisAguilar_DN

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