At least five people were killed Thursday in a massive crash involving 75 to 100 vehicles on an icy Texas interstate, police said, as a winter storm dropped freezing rain, sleet, and snow on parts of the U.S.
The number of injured was still unknown as police were still working the accident on Interstate 35 near downtown Fort Worth, police said. Police set up a reunification center for family members at a community center.
Farther south, in Austin, more than two dozen vehicles were involved in a pileup on an icy road, and one person was injured, emergency officials said.
Elsewhere, ice storm warnings were in effect from Arkansas to Kentucky, while another winter storm was predicted to bring snow to Mid-Atlantic states, the National Weather Service said.
More than 125,000 homes and businesses were without electricity Thursday morning, largely in Kentucky and West Virginia, according to the website poweroutage.us, which tracks utility reports.
Meanwhile, officials in central Kentucky were urging people to stay home due to icy conditions.
Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear said state offices would be closed due to the weather. He declared a state of emergency, which he said would free up funding and help agencies coordinate as they respond to reports of slick roads and downed power lines.
Crews were responding to numerous calls of downed icy tree limbs and power lines, Lexington police said in a tweet that urged people not to travel “unless absolutely necessary.”