December 28, 2012

Storm rakes half of nation; Arkansas still dark

Kelly P. Kissel/The Associated Press

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An Entergy Arkansas Inc., crew works to restore power to customers on Whittington Avenue near the entrance to Hot Springs National Park, Thursday, Dec. 27, 2012, in Hot Springs, Ark. A Christmas Day storm dumped between 6 to 15 inches of snow knocking out power to about half of the 61,000 customers in Garland County. (AP Photo/The Sentinel-Record, Richard Rasmussen)

AP

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A lone cyclist navigates the bike path through a snow storm at Chicago's North Ave. beach Thursday, Dec. 27, 2012. A muted version of the deadly winter storm that has killed more than a dozen across the eastern half of the country reached the Northeast on Thursday, limiting most of its wrath to travel headaches as Christmas revelers tried to return home. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)

AP

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A Michigan woman who was riding in a car that struck a tree and two people riding in a car that slid across the center line of a road in Arkansas and hit another vehicle.

Two people were killed in Kentucky crashes, a New York man was killed after his pickup truck skidded on an icy road in northwest Pennsylvania, and an Ohio teenager died after losing control of her car and smashing into an oncoming snowplow.

Forty-two students traveling to London and Dublin were stuck in the Nashville, Tenn., airport thanks to poor weather in the Northeast. The frustrated students, from universities in Tennessee and Kentucky, were supposed to leave Wednesday and arrive in London on Thursday.

"It's a two-week program, so it's shortened already," said Joe Woolley, spokesman for the Cooperative Center for Study Abroad.

Farther east, the storm knocked out power to more than 7,000 homes and businesses in Maryland. In New Jersey, gusts of more than 70 mph were recorded along the coast, and the weather service issued a flood warning for some coastal areas. There were about 800 power outages in Vermont, but only a handful in neighboring New Hampshire.

Back in Arkansas, utility workers struggling in freezing temperatures restored power to nearly a third of their customers that lost power during the Christmas storm, but that still meant that more than 135,000 homes and businesses were in the dark as forecasters predicted another round of freezing rain for Friday.

"You just want to be home," Garner said at her sister's house. "You just want to be in your own bed. There's nothing like the comfort of your own home."

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With temperatures in the single digits, city parks and recreation employee Greg Pecha floods a hockey rink Wednesday evening, Dec. 26, 2012 at Roosevelt Park in Eau Claire, Wis. Skating rinks in the city are opening a bit later than usual due to above-average temperatures earlier in the month. (AP Photo/Eau Claire Leader-Telegram, Steve Kinderman).

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