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Last Updated: Friday, 19 January 2007, 04:29 GMT
US harsh weather extends its grip
Lorries on closed highway in California
One of California's major highways was forced to close
Harsh winter weather gripping parts of the US in recent days has spread to the normally balmy south-west, as storms threaten south-eastern states.

At least 65 people have died since storms began last Friday, most in weather-related road accidents.

Rare snow fell on the hills above the popular Malibu resort in California, as temperatures reached near-record lows.

Areas of the central US have been warned to brace for a second wave of cold temperatures and snow on Friday.

Storm warnings have gone out in Georgia and the Carolinas, states previously little affected by the weather.

Temperatures are expected to remain low for several more days.

Power lost

At least one of California's main highways, connecting Los Angeles with state capital Sacramento, was closed.

Frozen branches in Saratoga Springs, New York State

Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger declared a state of emergency in 10 counties, after citrus crops were badly damaged.

As much as three-quarters of the crop has been wiped out, with flowers, vegetables and other fruit also affected.

Texas has also been badly affected, with schools and roads closed and hundreds of flights cancelled in Dallas, San Antonio, Austin and Houston.

Ice storms - in which rain falls in temperatures so low it freezes - knocked out power to half a million people across the country earlier in the week.

The worst-hit areas were Missouri, where freezing rain left behind a 7.6cm (three inch) coating of ice, and Oklahoma, where tens of thousands were still without electricity by Wednesday evening.

US President George W Bush has declared states of emergency in both states.

Most of those who have died were killed in weather-related accidents. But at least one person died from carbon monoxide poisoning - a common cause of death when people without electricity use fuel-burning stoves in their homes.

In Washington state and Oregon, five inches (13 cm) of snow fell on Tuesday, snarling traffic on major highways and forcing motorists to abandon their cars.


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VIDEO AND AUDIO NEWS
Scenes of the harsh conditions across the US



SEE ALSO
Your pictures: US ice storms
16 Jan 07 |  In Pictures
In pictures: US ice storms
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Deaths rise as US storm spreads
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Colorado chaos as snow sweeps in
29 Dec 06 |  Americas

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