TODAY   |  December 04, 2013

Dangerous cold weather system affecting millions

NBC’s Miguel Almaguer reports from Denver, where temperatures are well below normal. The state is just one of many affected by what some are calling the “Siberian Express,” a dangerous cold weather system.

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This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>> the weather not so great in other part of the country. today's top story is a monster storm that's impacting millions of people all across many parts of the country. nbc's miguel almaguer is in denver this morning with more on that. miguel, good morning to you.

>> reporter: matt, good morning. this storm is impacting some 32 million americans and it's not what you see, all this falling snow that makes this storm so dangerous. it's what you feel. it is 8 degrees here in denver . a wicked storm that is now deadly. this morning, a brutal blast of arctic air turning parts of the country into an icebox. outside duluth, minnesota where 26 inches of snow fell tuesday, another foot of powder is in the forecast today with many treats unplowed and impassable. at least four lost their lives on snow and slippery roads. by friday it could be 22 degrees below zero .

>> i'm not too stoked about it but it happened. this is minnesota .

>> reporter: but in some regions, this could be record cold. polar air is dropping temperatures as much as 40 degrees below normal. in the rocky mountains , snow. in many of the plain states, ice. a deep freeze that could last a week. for some areas, it hasn't been this cold for this long in decades.

>> i don't like 30 below weather. nobody does.

>> today, even california is facing the freeze. in san francisco this morning, temperatures in the 30s.

>> it's really cold.

>> reporter: in the central valley where 85% of the citrus crop is still on the vine, farmers believe this $1.5 billion industry won't survive the cold snap .

>> you say your prayers and go to bed and up next the next morning and see what's happening.

>> reporter: an icy blast wreaking widespread havoc and just getting started. we talked about crops but the real concern is frostbite. they were calling it the siberian express . we couldn't feel our face for the last hour or so.

>> that's going to be the case for a lot of folks out there. this is a monster tomorrow that's going to be affecting a lot of people. how many? take a look at this. the numbers are staggering on this. we're talking about upwards of 32 million people going to be affected by this system. in fact, when you take a look at weather advisories, winter weather warnings and watches, 25 states affected. how many miles? 3.3 square million miles of this country going to be affected by this. you can see this massive storm getting itself together. winter storm warnings and winter storm watches. we're also going to be looking at this system starting to fire up. snow from minnesota all the way back to denver . snowfall amounts are going to be anywhere from 6 to 18 inches of snow. the other thing we're going to be worrying about is ice and power outages. upper sections of minnesota up to a foot of snow. and the wind and the cold a big factor guys. we have ice to talk about, power outages and cold temperatures coming into a good portion of the country.

>> winter is here, al. thank