Steve Beusterien, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Kansas City, says weather conditions are rapidly deteriorating across the state as a cold front moves in.

"The cold front has moved through much of northern and central Missouri and temperatures have already fallen into the single digits and teens north of Interstate 70, and temperatures are right now 5 to 10 along the Iowa border and 15 to 20 near Interstate 70 and a little warmer to the south," Beusterien says. "Cold air will continue to rush into Missouri this afternoon with strong northwest winds at 15 to 25 miles per hour. The wind chill has already fallen to about 15 below at the Iowa border."

Temperatures are expected to fall to about 5 degrees to 10 degrees below zero across Missouri tonight, Beusterien says, with wind chills falling to about 25 below.

"Naturally … you’ll need to bundle up, reduce your exposure to outdoors," he says, "and if you’re traveling, make sure you have your winter safety kit with you … a little bit of food, extra blankets, flashlights."

"If you get out there and get stranded you’ll get cold quite quickly," he says.

In the case that residents do get stranded on the road, or find themselves without heat in their homes tonight, it’s recommended they call their local emergency personnel or law enforcement agency for help, he says.

Though the weather outside is frightful, Beusterien says there are warmer days in the near forecast and by early next week, the state will see weather that’s "quite nice for this time of year."