Storms kill 2 in US, thousands lose power

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Sunday, December 22, 2013

MONROE, Louisiana -- A storm system is sweeping across the central and southern United States, bringing tornadoes and wind gusts that ripped roofs from barns and hurled trees into power lines, leaving thousands without power.

Officials said at least two people were killed Saturday.

A man died after his mobile home overturned in northern Mississippi and another man was killed when his car hit a tree that had fallen across a county road in southeastern Mississippi. A police official said a woman, who was also in the car, was critically injured.

In Arkansas, at least five people were injured and two dozen homes were damaged after two apparent tornadoes touched down.

At the storm's height, more than 22,000 people lost power in northern Mississippi, though that number was beginning to fall late Saturday night.

The National Weather Service said severe storms with damaging winds were possible early Sunday morning in northern Georgia, including Atlanta. A flood watch for the region was in effect through Monday.

In the northeast, ice and whipping winds battered parts of New York and Vermont as officials urged motorists to avoid traveling in dangerously slick conditions.

Winds were expected to pick up, increasing the chances of outage issues, but a state of emergency was keeping roads clear of hapless motorists, county dispatch operations supervisor Jim Chestnut said.

Significant accumulations of ice were expected to continue into Sunday afternoon for northern parts of New York, Vermont and New Hampshire as well as western Maine, the according to the National Weather Service.

More than 95,000 utility customers were without power Sunday morning in New York, Vermont and Maine because of widespread ice accumulations. (AP)

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