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VLADIVOSTOK, December 18 (Itar-Tass) – An expansive cold atmospheric front has taken Russia’s Far East and Yakutia in its grips, bringing frosts as severe as below minus 50 C to at least five population centers.
Temperatures varying from minus 49 C to minus 30 C were registered in about forty cities and towns in the small hours of Tuesday.
The Yakut township of Oimyakon once again became the coolest place in Russia in the immediate literal sense of the word, as the temperature sank to minus 54.7 C there, a duty staff member at a local meteorological station told Itar-Tass by telephone.
A temperature of minus 52 C was reported by the Verkhneye Penzhino weather monitoring station in the north of the Kamchatka territory.
Tuesday afternoon, residents of the towns of Susuman and Seimchan in the Magadan region indicated the temperatures of minus 51 C, and the lowest reading for the Chukotka peninsula was minus 50 C.
Most population centers in the Khabarovsk territory, the Amur region and the Jewish autonomous region are under the sway of a frost lower than minus 30 C.
In contrast to this, the Primorsky /Maritime/ territory, the island of Sakhalin and the Southern Kurile Isles are enjoying the protective power of the Pacific Ocean.
An unusual warm spell has reached the Southern Kuriles from somewhere much farther south in the Pacific. Tuesday morning, a temperature of about 0 C was reported from the towns of Kurilsk on Iturup Island and Yuzhno-Kurilsk on the island of Kunashir.
The vicious frost has brought an unexpected joy to school kids in the form of an unscheduled vacation and an opportunity to stay home, as the school authorities in a big number of places have had to cancel all the classes.
All the schools are closed in the Susuman and Srednekansk districts in the Magadan region and the suspension of classes has affected all the grades from one to eleven there.
Quiet reigns in the corridors and sports halls at schools Yakutia’s Oimyakon district and in the township of Markovo in Chukotka.
In some parts of the Magadan region where the air temperatures like minus 35 C do not impress anyone, classes have been suspended only for grades one to four, while older school students are expected to attend schools all the same.
There is no need to suspend classes anywhere in the area surrounding Kamchatka’s Verkhneye Penzhino meteorological station. Its entire population consists of three weather forecasters who work there by a rotational team method.
Generally, the area within 200 or so kilometers around the station does not have a single town or village.
Weather forecasts indicate that the Far East and Yakutia will remain in the realm of severe frosts for at least another two days.