The last of a wave of snowstorms is expected to pass through the eastern United States Friday and Saturday, after the biggest snowfall yet in an exceptionally harsh winter.
The last snowstorms were predicted as millions of people struggled to dig out of heavy snow that blanketed the eastern third of the country. A million people in the South were in the dark after ice coated trees and snapped power lines.
At least 18 deaths were attributed to the storm, including that of a pregnant woman whose car was hit by a snowplow. Her baby was delivered in critical condition.
The storm hit the southeast Wednesday and moved up the Atlantic coast Thursday into New England in the northeastern U.S. More than 30 centimeters of snow fell on parts of the mid-Atlantic, closing down the federal government and schools, and grounding thousands of flights.
Meanwhile, U.S. President Barack Obama visits Fresno, California, Friday to check on the state of an ongoing drought there. He is scheduled to meet with local officials and farmers, as well as other stakeholders affected by the drought to learn about its effects on local agriculture.
Also during his visit, the president is to announce new measures to provide relief to those suffering from the drought. The measures include $100 million in disaster assistance for livestock owners, $15 million in targeted conservation assistance, and $60 million in aid for food banks.