DALLAS (AP) — As Texas residents prepared for what one hardware store manager called "Ice Friday," schools started canceling classes and thousands of shoppers jammed store aisles to buy milk, pet food and other supplies.
Earlier this week, many in Texas were basking in spring-like temperatures hitting the 80s. But by Thursday, Texas was facing the same wintry blast that's hitting much of the U.S., bringing frigid temperatures, ice and snow.
At a Dallas Home Depot, manager James McGilberry said the store was already running out of firewood and ice melt on Thursday afternoon, as freezing rain and wind began hitting the region. Residents were preparing for a storm that threatened to slicken highways, freeze power lines — and leave them stranded through the weekend.
"It's almost like a Black Friday," McGilberry said, "but I guess we'll call it an Ice Friday."
The National Weather Service issued winter storm and ice warnings through much of Friday for parts of Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Mississippi, Missouri, Illinois and Indiana. Some parts of the Midwest were expected to see several inches of snow.
The system has already dumped 1 to 2 feet of snow in parts of Minnesota and Wisconsin and draped many communities in skin-stinging cold.