US energy crisis deepens with nearly 5 million people in the dark

The energy crisis crippling Texas’ power system continued to spread, with nearly 5 million people across the United States plunged into darkness as authorities fought to prevent a total grid collapse.

Homes and businesses from North Dakota to Texas are losing power amid an unprecedented deep freeze that has broken daily temperature records in hundreds of places.

Power outages are expected to continue through Tuesday with no firm end in sight, as cold weather is expected to remain until Wednesday.

Authorities reported the deaths of two people, possibly due to the cold, according to the AP news agency. Medical centers are rushing to administer vaccines before they deteriorate. The flights are grounded.

More than a million barrels of oil a day and 10 billion cubic feet of gas production are shut down as pipelines have declared force majeure and huge refineries halt gasoline and diesel production.

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