The “perfect storm,” a long, painful and deadly assault continued Wednesday night into Thursday for millions of Americans, who face another storm heading into the weekend.
The National Weather Service said more than 100 million – many already without power – are going to feel the brunt of this one before they can expect some relief, with temperatures easing warmer over the following few days.
Texas and the Southeast, already hard-hit, are predicted to experience more snow and ice through Thursday.
“We do our best to plan for events, but I mean this is beyond anything that I believe any reasonable person would have said would have happened at the same time,” Joshua Rhodes, research associate at the University of Texas at Austin, said Thursday on CNBC’s ‘Worldwide Exchange.’
“It is somewhat of the perfect storm.”
The death toll, now exceeding 30, includes a Houston family who perished because of carbon monoxide poisoning from car exhaust in their garage. And 13 children were treated for carbon monoxide poisoning at Cook Children’s Medical Center in Fort Worth, Texas, according to hospital officials.
More than 560,000 customers in Texas were without power Thursday, according to data from PowerOutage.us, but that’s an improvement from Tuesday when the number reached more than 4 million customers.
Outages ramped up in Louisiana and Mississippi: more than 100,000 customers in Louisiana; nearly 200,000 in Mississippi, according to PowerOutage.us.
A new problem in Texas is water. Because of the outages and bursting pipes, officials ordered 7 million people — a quarter of the state’s population — to boil tap water before drinking it.
The coming storm, with its snow and ice, will produce “just a real mess” for the South, Midwest and Northeast, AccuWeather meteorologist Bernie Rayno said.