Plummeting temps on tap for much of U.S.

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By Holly Yan, CNN

If you think this week’s holiday travel will be crazy, it’s got nothing on the wild weather sweeping the country.

New York City basked in record-breaking temperatures in the 70s Sunday, but temps will plummet to near freezing by Monday night. Much of the Southeast, still soaked by several inches of rainfall Sunday, will get deluged again Monday. And parts of the Midwest and Pacific Northwest could see a white Christmas, with as much as 6 to 12 inches of snow.

The extreme weekend weather also turned deadly. At least five people died in Kentucky floodwaters, two people died in Mississippi storms, and one person died in a traffic accident during Missouri’s severe weather, officials said. A weather-related wreck Saturday near Wichita, Kansas, left one person dead, according to CNN affiliate KWCH-TV. And a tornado Saturday also killed a woman in Arkansas, CNN affiliate KARK-TV in Little Rock reported.

Here’s what you can expect in the coming days:

The good news: No weather watches or warnings were up around the country Monday, and heavy snow will taper off, leaving just a layer of light snow Monday, especially around the Great Lakes.

The bad news: Temperatures will begin to drop to 15 to 25 degrees below normal Monday and Tuesday in the Upper Midwest.

“Blowing snow and dangerous wind chill temperatures will be a hazard on Wednesday for the region,” the National Weather Service said.

Some Michigan residents are dealing with no electricity. Sara Hadley’s family lost power after an ice storm struck her hometown of Lansing. She sent photos of some of the countless icicles in her neighborhood.

“Last time we had ice like this was 1998,” Hadley told CNN’s iReport.

Southeast: When it rains, it pours

Georgia, South Carolina and states in the Mid-Atlantic will see an encore of weekend downpours Monday, the National Weather Service said. Beware of thunderstorms and flooding from the Florida Panhandle through the northern Mid-Atlantic region.

Once the heavy rainfall leaves, a wave of cold temperatures will take its place Tuesday. Temperatures will likely be 10 to 15 degrees colder than normal on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.

Northeast: Hot and cold

New York City broke a record high Sunday at 70 degrees, National Weather Service meteorologist Ashley Sears said. The previous record, set in 1998, was 63.

But temperatures will fall each day until Wednesday, and by Christmas, New York might not even reach the freezing mark.

And in northern New England, another round of snow and ice is set for Monday, the National Weather Service said.

Pacific Northwest: Another storm brewing

Coastal and valley rain as well as mountain snow is in the forecast through Tuesday, the service said.

Higher elevations could get dumped with 6 to 12 inches of snow.

Canada: ‘Catastrophic’ ice storm

In Canada, the storm brought ice that toppled trees and power lines, leaving more than 350,000 Ontario residents without power — or any certainty about when they’ll get it back.

Power crews in Toronto had restored power to 75,000 customers, according to Mayor Rob Ford. Still, Toronto Hyrdo — which provides power to the city — reported more than 250,000 customers had no electricity as of early Monday. Other power companies were also reporting outages, including Hydro One, which serves areas outside of Toronto and which said 115,864 customers remained without power Monday morning.

Toronto Hydro CEO Anthony Haines said major power lines are being restored at a rate of one every few minutes, but street-to-street work remains, and he couldn’t offer a guarantee everyone will have power by Christmas.

“I know everybody wants an absolute time, but I just can’t give it to you,” Haines said.

Authorities described the ice storm as one of the worst in city history, but Ford said conditions were “not even close” to warranting an emergency declaration.

Toronto had opened several warming centers and was seeking to open more, officials said.

CNN’s Adam Shivers, Todd Borek, Jareen Imam, Leslie Holland and Janet DiGiacomo contributed to this report.

TM & © 2013 Cable News Network, Inc., a Time Warner Company. All rights reserved.

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