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In blizzard's icy wake, intense cold grips U.S. Northeast

From Reuters - January 5, 2018

BOSTON/NEW YORK (Reuters) - Street crews dug out snow-clogged roads across the U.S. Northeast on Friday after a powerful blizzard, with temperatures set to plunge further during a brutal cold spell that has already killed at least 18 people.

From Baltimore to Caribou, Maine, workers battled to clear snow and ice as wind chills were forecast to fall as low as minus 40 degrees Fahrenheit (minus 40 degrees Celsius) in some areas after sundown, according to the National Weather Service.

In the latest fatality blamed on the harsh conditions, a driver slid off an icy road, killing a pedestrian, early on Friday in North Charleston, South Carolina, city officials said.

THE DANGERS ARE REAL, the officials warned in a Twitter message. Huge patches of ice all over the city. Stay at home.

The fierce cold will reach from New England to the Midwest and down to the Carolinas, forecasters warned, adding that low-temperature records could be broken across the region over the coming days.

In much of New England on Friday, the highs reached only into the single digits or teens Fahrenheit, with intense wind chills, said Dan Pydynowski, a meteorologist with private forecasting service AccuWeather.

It can be very dangerous, Pydynowski said. Any kind of exposed skin can freeze in a couple of minutes. Wind chill describes the combined effect of wind and low temperatures on bare skin.

There were noticeably fewer tourists on Friday afternoon in New York Citys Times Square, which is usually thronged with visitors from countries around the world.

Arjun Shah, a 22-year-old Briton, studies in Indiana but had never visited the U.S. East Coast before. He flew in to New York City, where temperatures have been below freezing since Christmas Day, just 24 hours before the blizzard whipped in.

Oh its so bad! Its not this bad in London, Shah said, shivering while taking a break from snapping photos of the square. Its my first time experiencing minus 10 degrees C. (14F).

MULTIPLE FATALITIES

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