US winter storm causes 3rd day of dangerous, icy conditions

The Associated Press - February 2, 2023 9:08 am

By KEN MILLER and JEFF MARTIN Associated Press

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — A deadly storm system lashed a large swath of the southern U.S. with bands of sleet and snow for a third day on Wednesday, grounding an additional 2,300 flights, leaving hundreds of thousands without power, forcing school closures, and making already treacherous driving conditions worse.

Watches and warnings about wintry conditions were issued for an area stretching West Texas’ border with Mexico through Oklahoma, Arkansas, Louisiana, and into western Tennessee and northern Mississippi. Several rounds of mixed precipitation, including freezing rain and sleet, were in store for many areas throughout the day, meaning some places could get hit multiple times, forecasters said.

By late Wednesday morning, 2,300 U.S. flights had been canceled, including three-quarters of the flights at Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport and more than two-thirds at Dallas Love Field, according to the flight tracking service FlightAware.com. Dallas-Forth Worth International is American Airlines’ biggest hub, and Love Field is a major base for Southwest Airlines.

Many flights were also canceled at other airports, including in San Antonio, the Texas capital of Austin, and Nashville, Tennessee, compounding frustrations caused by the nearly 2,000 cancellations on Tuesday and roughly 1,100 on Monday.

Because of the storm, the Detroit Pistons were unable to fly home following their game on Monday against the Dallas Mavericks, and the NBA postponed the Pistons’ Wednesday night home game against the Washington Wizards.

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Martin reported from Atlanta. Associated Press journalists David Koenig in Dallas; Paul J. Weber in Austin, Texas; and Donna Warder in Washington, D.C., contributed to this report.

 

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