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Powerful storm rakes northern Europe
Hundreds of people in Britain mopped up flooded homes Friday after a powerful storm that scoured northern Europe with hurricane-force gusts kicked up the biggest tidal surge in 60 years, swamping stretches of shoreline.
The rising seas prompted evacuations along the eastern English coast, with 1,400 properties flooded and at least a half-dozen communities at great risk of exceptionally high tides and large waves.
Accidents linked to the storm that roared across Europe Thursday have killed at least eight people, from Britain to Sweden, Denmark and Poland.
Associated Press
Joseph Mezo uses an umbrella as he walks to work in sleet and icy conditions Friday morning in Dallas. An ice storm walloped north Texas.

Texas gripped by ice storm

– Freezing rain and stinging winds slammed the Southwest on Friday and made a strangely blank landscape out of normally sun-drenched north Texas: mostly empty highways covered in a sometimes impassable frost, closed schools and businesses, and millions of residents hunkered down for icy conditions expected to last through the weekend.

Earlier this week, many in Texas were basking in spring-like temperatures in the 80s. But by Thursday, Texas was facing the same wintry blast that has slammed much of the U.S., bringing frigid temperatures, ice and snow.

The weather forced the cancellation of Sunday’s Dallas Marathon, which was expected to draw 25,000 runners, some of whom had trained for months. A quarter-million customers in north Texas were left without power, and many businesses told employees to stay home to avoid the slick roads.

Rob Yates, 44, of the Dallas suburb of Rowlett, had trained for four months to participate in the half-marathon Sunday – his first time competing at that distance. His wife and three children were going to attend the race to volunteer and cheer him on, he said.

Now, “I’ll probably be catching up on some work,” Yates said, laughing.

Friday’s storm stretched from south Texas, where anxious residents bagged outdoor plants to protect them from the cold, through the Midwest and Ohio Valley and up into northern New England and the Canadian Maritimes.

In north Texas, agencies and residents haven’t forgotten the disastrous week before the Super Bowl two years ago, when an inadequate response to a snowstorm crippled the region and left visitors stranded on impassable highways.

People in the Dallas area raided grocery shelves and home improvement stores Thursday in advance of what one store manager joked was the Black Friday of bad weather – “Ice Friday.” Most people appeared to heed warnings Friday to stay inside.

The weather led to more than 1,000 cancellations at Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport, one of the nation’s busiest airports and a key hub for Fort Worth-based American Airlines. Many travelers were stuck waiting – and hoping for another flight.

“I don’t let things like this stop me,” said Dayo Bankale, an airport cabdriver. “I’m not scared.”

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