Millions endure the cold of the record without power; At least 20 dead

Ocean Isle Beach, NC (AP) – Winter hurricanes lost millions of lives in record-breaking cold weather, killing more people, including three people and four family members, after a hurricane hit a coastal city in North Carolina. A fire in a Houston-area building while using a fireplace to stay warm.

Storm Which flooded the power grid on Tuesday and brought heavy snow and freezing rain to New England and the Deep South, leaving behind painful low temperatures. Wind-chill warnings extended from Canada to Mexico.

In all, at least 20 deaths have been reported. Other causes include car crashes and carbon monoxide poisoning. The weather has also threatened to affect the country’s COVID-19 vaccination efforts. The administration of President J. Biden said the shipment and delivery of the vaccine is likely to be delayed.

There was little notice of dangerous weather in Brunswick County, North Carolina, and a tornado warning was not issued until the storm hit the ground already.

The National Weather Service was amazed at how quickly the hurricane intensified … and at night when most people are at home and in bed it creates a very dangerous situation.

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In Chicago, two feet of new snow (46 centimeters) forced public schools to cancel individual classes for Tuesday. Hours earlier, along Mexico’s generally hilarious bay, cross-country skier Sam Fag hit a fresh powder on the beach in Galveston, Texas.

U.S. The worst power outage occurred in Texas, Affecting more than 2 million homes and businesses. More than 250,000 people also lost power in parts of Ala Palachia, and another 200,000 were without power following a blizzard in northwestern Oregon, according to Power Outage.US, citing utility outage reports. Four million people lost power in Mexico.

Texas officials requested 60 generators from the Federal Emergency Management Agency and planned to prioritize hospitals and nursing homes. The agency said 35 shelters have been opened for more than 1,000 occupants in the state.

More than 500 people sought rest at a shelter in Houston. Mayor Sylvester Turner said they lost power as other warming centers closed.

After losing power on Monday, Natalie Herrell said she, her boyfriend and four children were sheltered at a gallery furniture store in Houston. The warming center at the store provides people with the power to charge food, water and essential electronics.

“It’s worse than a hurricane,” Harrell said. “I think we’ll live more days without light, it seems.”

Utilities from Minnesota to Texas implemented rolling blackouts to ease the load on the power grid to meet the huge demand for heat and electricity.

More than an hour of blackouts began around noon on Tuesday for Oklahoma City and more than a dozen other communities that kept temperatures around minus 8 degrees (minus 22 degrees Celsius) as well as shutting down electric-powered space heaters, furnaces and lights. Gave.

Oklahoma Gas and Electric defended plans for more blackouts, but urged users to set thermostats at ther 68 degrees Fahrenheit (40 degrees Celsius), avoid using large electric appliances, and turn off unused lights or appliances.

However, Antarctica, under the direction of its grid manager, Midcontent Independent System Rator Porter, launched blackouts Tuesday night in Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi and Southeast Texas, “as a last resort and to prevent more widespread, prolonged power outages “Affects the reliability of the power grid,” a statement said From the New Reliance-based utility.

“Demand for electricity has reached an all-time high due to extremely cold temperatures over the last several days,” Energy said in a statement. “In addition, these weather conditions have forced the closure of paid resources in the system. Implementation of this load shed in the Enterage area will help ensure adequate reserve margins, which will help ensure Enterage is in better condition to operate from additional extreme weather this week. “

Entry has about 3 million electric power customers in four states.

The Nebraska blackout occurred amid the coldest weather on record: in Omaha, temperatures dropped to minus 23 degrees (minus 30 degrees Celsius) overnight, the coldest in 25 years.

The Southwest Power Pool, a group of utilities covering 14 states, said the blackout was “the last resort to fully maintain the reliability of the electric system.”

Surprisingly, Texas County was forced to administer more than 8,000 doses of the modern coronavirus vaccine after losing public health facilities early Monday, and its backup generator also failed, said Harris County Judge Lena Hidalgo.

County officials distributed the dose, which could be spoiled at three hospitals, Rice University and the county jail, as there were large groups of people available who did not have to drive and proper medical personnel were not present.

“It simply came to our notice then. I am so grateful, “said Harry Golen, a college led sophomore who waited about four hours with his friends, much of it in the cold, and was one of the last to get the shot, which would not have reached the students otherwise. March or April.

Texas officials said the more than 400,000 doses now due to the hurricane would not reach at least Wednesday.

The hurricane that hit Brunswick County, North Carolina, was an EF3 with an estimated wind speed of 160 mph (257 kph), the weather service said on Twitter.

Three people were killed and 10 were injured when a tornado crashed into a golf course community and other rural area just before midnight Monday, destroying dozens of homes.

Shar told 63-year-old Sharon Benson that her roof was damaged and her garage door was blown off. The windows were shattered and nearby trees were cut down.

“The sky shone and the p-pop-p-p-ping ping was too much” and the roar, he said.

Several state officials report deaths in crashes on icy roads, in which two vehicles overturned and overturned in a Kentucky waterway on Sunday, state police said. A Mississippi man died after losing control of his vehicle, which overturned on an icy road near Starkville on Monday night, Ti Ktibeha County Coroner Michael Hunt said Tuesday.

In Texas, a Houston-area fire killed three young children and their grandmother, possibly starting when they were using the fireplace to keep warm during lightning, a fire official said. And in reg Reagan, authorities on Tuesday confirmed the deaths of four people last week in the Portland metro area of ​​carbon monoxide poisoning.

At least 13 children were treated for carbon monoxide poisoning at Cook Children’s Medical Center in Fort Worth, the hospital said in a social media post, warning that families were “going to extreme measures to heat their homes” – propane or diesel. Burning. Engines and generators, gas ovens and stovetops. One parent died from toxic smoking, pediatrician Philip Scott told the Fort Worth television station KTVT.

Other deaths in Texas include a woman and a girl who died from a suspected carbon monoxide poisoning in Houston whose home ran into a garage attached to a home without electricity, and two men were found along the Houston-area roadway, possibly in temperature, subfreezing. Enforcement officials said.

A 10-year-old boy was killed Sunday after falling into an ice-covered lake during a winter storm in western Tennessee, fire officials said.

Some cities had record weaknesses: In Minnesota, the Hibbing / Chishom weather station recorded minus 38 degrees Fahrenheit (minus 39 degrees Celsius). The Sioux Falls of Dakota fell below minus 26 Fahrenheit (minus 26 degrees Celsius).

At noon, more than 800 US flights were canceled, led by more than 800 at the US Las Fort Worth International Airport and more than 700 at Houston’s Bush Intercontinental.

Officials urged residents to stay home Tuesday. About 100 school systems closed, delays in opening or turning to remote classes in Alabama, where forecasters said conditions would not improve until temperatures rose on Wednesday afternoon.


Employees from the Associated Press around the United States contributed to this report.