(ABC News) - Bitter cold has gripped the country from Minnesota to New York, and it's not going away anytime soon. More arctic air is on the way for the Midwest and the Northeast for the holiday weekend.
The coldest night is expected to be New Year’s Eve, when wind chills are expected to drop to as low as minus 55 degrees in the northern Plains and minus 20 to minus 30 degrees in the Northeast.
As the ball drops in New York City's Times Square on Sunday night at midnight, the temperature is forecast to be 11 degrees, with a wind chill of minus 4. If this happens, it would tie the second-coldest temperature ever recorded during the ball drop, which occurred in 1962.
How to keep your car safe
When the temperature dips, getting behind the wheel can prove to be a challenge. Problems include dead car batteries, iced-over windshields, broken car locks and driving with no traction.
Auto expert Audra Fordin provided these tips:
1. Before you hit the road, check under the hood.
"If it's really cold outside, you want to make sure that your battery is going to be good in the freezing cold weather," Fordin said. "If you see any snow or blue stuff that's growing off your battery, that's an indication you want to go to the shop to have your battery checked."
2. Iced out windshields? Turn to your wallet for help.
"If you get to your car and can't see, pull out a credit card, and you can just wipe that frost away," Fordin said.
3. Fighting a stubborn car lock? Get sanitizing.
"If your lock is frozen, Fordin said "to put the sanitizer on the key, and then put the key into the lock."
4. If your car can't gain traction, let your floor mat give an assist.
"Grab your floor mat, you're going to put it underneath the wheel," Fordin said. "That will give you enough traction to pull your car out and hit the road."
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