Severe weather was sliding east across the United States on Friday, threatening the Midwest and Northeast with heavy snowfall after possibly spawning tornadoes that damaged homes, businesses and a college campus in Louisiana and in Texas.
More than 75,000 customers were without power in Texas Friday morning and nearly 40,000 in California. Between 10,000 and 20,000 subscribers were also in the dark in Louisiana and Mississippi, according to poweroutage.us.
Severe weather could spawn tornadoes in the Ohio and Tennessee valleys as they track toward New England, the US Storm Prediction Center has warned.
Heavy snowfall is predicted for the Upper Midwest region and New England on Friday and Saturday. Sleet and freezing rain are possible south of areas that will receive snow.
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.
The US National Weather Center has confirmed that a tornado touched down near Pickton, about 130 kilometers east of Dallas.
Gusts of nearly 130 kilometers per hour were measured in the suburbs of Fort Worth. The local press reports that at least one roof was torn off by the wind.
There are also reports of uprooted trees and a torn roof north of Dallas. A tractor-trailer overturned on Highway 75 and police reported minor injuries.
Buildings on the Louisiana State University campus in Shreveport were damaged and trees uprooted, a spokeswoman said. Classes resumed Friday morning.
Heavy rains and flooding are reported in northern Arkansas and southern Missouri. A flash flood warning was in effect in the southeastern part of that state Friday morning.