Killer storm moves through southwest US; 11 dead

From California to Colorado and from Texas to Tennessee, snow and ice and freezing rain has pummeled the Southwestern U.S. in a crazy cold front that left Las Vegas below freezing and has killed at least 11 people so far.

Hundreds of flights have been canceled and thousands of people in Texas and Arkansas remain without power. More than a quarter million people lost power at one point or another in Texas, the Chicago Tribune reported Saturday. Roads in some parts of Texas have been rendered impassable with ice. Farther north, Jordan, Montana recorded a record low for December 7 of -42 degrees.

Near Dallas, hundreds of motorists were forced by impassable conditions to shelter in place on Interstate 35 north of Dallas after the highway was shut down for hours Friday morning, reported the Fort Worth Star Telegram. Temperatures in the mid-20s Saturday are unlikely to give way to above-freezing temperatures for very long before Monday.

The storm is making its way east and will pass through New England by Monday.

Watch an NBC report about the unfolding misery of the storm below.

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Arctic air, snow and freezing rain was expected across parts of the U.S. Saturday from California to the Northeast, as the winter storm that has killed 11 people continues to wreak havoc.

The Weather Channel forecast rain, freezing temperatures and snow in areas from the Golden State into the southern Rockies on Saturday and then a lighter dusting in the Midwest by Sunday -- but the dangerous threat of more freezing rain. Temperatures as low as 27 degrees were expected in usually mild Las Vegas and surrounding areas, while New England was set to get the tail end by Monday.

The deaths of at least 11 people — including three in California and the mayor of a small Missouri town — were blamed on the deep freeze, which canceled hundreds of flights and left hundreds of thousands of people without power.