More than 20 people were killed while millions of people were left without power after a brutal cold wave took over Texas and spun killer tornadoes into the US Southeast on Wednesday.
The historic cold wave has engulfed vast swaths of the United States inclding Texas, shuttering COVID-19 inoculation centres and hindering vaccine supplies. It is not expected to relent until the weekend.
Officials in Texas drew criticism as the state energy grid repeatedly failed, forcing rolling blackouts. Freezing weather stilled giant wind turbines that dot the West Texas landscape, making it impossible for energy companies to meet escalating demand.
Millions of people in the state have been struggling to cope with the lack of power and frigid conditions.
The extreme weather is forecast to continue until the weekend.
Deaths attributed to the storm have been recorded in Texas, Louisiana, Kentucky, North Carolina and Missouri.
Meanwhile in North Carolina, a tornado spawned by the same storm left three people dead and 10 injured.
The cold snap has also forced Covid-19 vaccination centres to close for several days and hindered deliveries of doses in a handful of US states.