Vermont emergency officials are warning people to be prepared for what's expected to be the coldest weather of the season so far.

The Vermont Health Department is reminding people to take care when they're outside during the winter cold.

Last month was the coldest February on record in parts of Vermont. The temperature stayed below freezing for 43 consecutive days in parts of the state up until Wednesday.

Vermont Public Safety officials say at least 26 communities in the state have had problems with frozen pipes over the past week.

A teeth-chattering cold wave with sub-zero temperatures is expected to keep its icy grip on much of the eastern U.S. into the weekend before seasonable temperatures bring relief.

The polar air mass prompted the National Weather Service to issue wind chill warnings across upstate New York and northern New England.