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    Jan 09, 2014

    US fugitive chooses prison over cold


    AN INMATE who went on the run from a Kentucky prison begged to be let back in just a day later because he was so cold, United States police said.

    Robert Vick escaped from the Blackburn jail on Sunday but turned up at the Sunset Motel in Lexington the next day asking for the police to be called, said Lexington police spokesman Sherelle Roberts.

    Vick said he wanted to go back to prison because he was so cold, added Ms Roberts, saying temperatures in the central-eastern state were -20 deg C.

    The 42-year-old was placed under observation for a few hours "because of exposure to the cold" and then returned to the Blackburn jail.

    All of Canada and all the US states bar tropical Hawaii recorded temperatures below freezing on Tuesday, even usually warm and sunny Florida and California.

    But the most dangerous cold - the kind that can cause frostbite in a minute and death in a matter of hours - hit the Midwest, dragged down as the "polar vortex" brought frigid air from the Arctic.

    The town of Embarrass, Minnesota, recorded the lowest temperature in the United States on Tuesday at a frigid -37 deg C.

    Then there was the wind chill. That dipped as low as -52 deg C in Montana.

    The Amundsen-Scott South Pole Station recorded a temperature of -23 deg Cand a wind-chill factor of -35 deg C on Tuesday.