(NEW YORK) — Tens of thousands of customers were still without power across the United States on Thursday morning in the wake of deadly winter storms and as more severe weather moves in, leaving no time for respite.
As of 6 a.m. ET, electricity was out for more than 33,000 customers in New York; 17,000 in Pennsylvania; 13,000 in North Carolina; 10,000 in New Jersey; and 9,000 in Vermont, according to data collected by PowerOutage.us.
Tuesday’s powerful storms, which saw heavy downpours of snow and rain as well as reported tornadoes, led to the deaths of at least five people nationwide — one each in Alabama, Georgia, Wisconsin, North Carolina and Wisconsin, according to authorities.
The weather also caused many waterways to rise to dangerous levels, including Connecticut’s Yantic River, which nearly broke a record of cresting at more than 14 feet on Wednesday, prompting mandatory evacuations and a threat of a dam break. Most rivers in the Northeast, including the Yantic, had started to recede by Thursday morning, but some larger ones, such as the Passaic River in New Jersey, continued to rise and was expected to crest later in the day.
Even more rain is in the forecast for the Northeast on Friday night into Saturday morning as another storm system sweeps across the country. An additional 1 to 2 inches of rainfall is expected, but local amounts of more than 2 inches is possible, which will keep already swollen rivers running high and could cause them to crest again into the major flood stage.
The new storm has already dumped a couple feet of snow on mountain ranges along the West Coast. One person was killed Wednesday in an avalanche at the Palisades Tahoe resort on the California side of Lake Tahoe, marking the first U.S. avalanche fatality of the 2023-2024 winter season, according to authorities.
As the weather system moves into the Plains on Thursday, the National Weather Service has issued winter storm warnings and watches from Nebraska to Michigan, including the major cities of Omaha, Nebraska; Des Moines, Iowa; Chicago, Illinois; and Grand Rapids, Michigan. Snowfall totals could exceed 12 inches in some areas.
Meanwhile, severe weather with the possibility of tornadoes is in the forecast on Thursday night into Friday morning for the entire South from Texas to the Carolinas, including areas just east of Dallas, Texas; into Little Rock, Arkansas; Shreveport, Louisiana; and to Jackson, Mississippi.
The storm is expected to move into the Southeast on Friday with the threat of severe weather stretching from Alabama to Florida and into the Carolinas. Major cities in the bullseye for tornadoes are Montgomery, Alabama; Macon, Georgia; Columbia, South Carolina; and just east of Charlotte, North Carolina.
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