The deadly Arctic outbreak associated with two major winter storms is maintaining its grip on much of the Lower 48 states, with Texas, Louisiana, Kentucky, West Virginia and other states struggling to bring their electricity grids back online. The death toll in the cold, snow, ice and power outages has reached at least 16 since Sunday, when temperatures plunged sharply.

In Texas, 2.6 million customers were still in the dark Wednesday evening, according to poweroutage.us. Officials in Texas are warning that outages are likely to last longer. Calls for investigations into what went wrong are mounting.

The second major winter storm to hit Texas in quick succession is predicted to spread disruptive amounts of frozen precipitation from northern Louisiana and Mississippi through the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast through early Friday. Meanwhile, San Antonio and Austin may be brushed with one more rounds of snow Thursday before conditions finally start to improve by the weekend.

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