(Concord) High winds and possible tornadoes killed 10 people Friday, damaged homes and buildings, and left thousands without power across much of the southern and midwestern United States. The storm could now hit the northeast of the country.
Three people were killed by falling trees in Alabama as severe weather swept through the state. In Mississippi, a woman died inside her SUV after a tree branch hit her vehicle. In Arkansas, a man drowned after driving through high flood waters.
On Friday, three weather-related deaths were reported in Kentucky. The deaths occurred in three different counties as storms with straight-line winds swept through the state. Media reported the deaths of two people in Tennessee when trees fell on them.
The storm also slammed into the Detroit area on Friday afternoon, quickly blanketing streets and roads in a blanket of snow. The weather service said some areas could experience blizzard conditions with snowfall approaching eight centimeters per hour.
Hail and high winds were also reported in Oklahoma.
The storm system was heading towards New England, where a mix of snow, sleet and rain was expected in the region from Friday evening through Saturday, leading the US National Weather Service to release a winter storm warning.
There is a risk of coastal flooding in Massachusetts and Rhode Island. The storm could bring up to 45 centimeters of snow to parts of New Hampshire and Maine. It will also bring strong winds with gusts of 80 km/h, which could cause power outages.
Airport officials in Portland, Maine canceled several flights on Saturday in anticipation of bad weather. Some area libraries and businesses have also announced weekend closures.
The storms that hit Texas and Louisiana on Thursday evening did not appear to have caused any injuries. The same system had previously deposited more than two meters of snow over parts of California.
Some residents of the mountains east of Los Angeles will likely be stuck at home for at least a week after the snowfall proved too much for most snowplows to handle.
Many residents of Alabama, Louisiana, Kentucky, Arkansas and Texas came out Friday to find their homes and businesses damaged. They also found uprooted trees due to tornadoes. Tens of thousands of people were without electricity and some also without water.
Heavy rains were also seen in southern Missouri and northern Arkansas, causing flooding in both states.
Elsewhere in the Midwest, Minnesota and Wisconsin were expecting areas of freezing fog reducing visibility through the weekend, the weather service said.