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New storm forms as race is on to restore power for nearly 400,000

New storm forms as race is on to restore power for nearly 400,000
A man inspects an ice-covered downed tree that took out a utility line and landed atop a minivan in Philadelphia, after the city was slammed by a winter storm. Utility crews aren't getting much relief from the weather as they work to restore electricity to hundreds of thousands of people in Pennsylvania and Maryland. (Matt Rourke / AP)

Utility workers struggled Friday to continue repairing downed power lines, but hundreds of thousands of people remained without electricity two days after a major storm swept through Pennsylvania and Maryland.

More than a foot of snow fell in many areas of the Northeast in the second of two snowstorms this week. On Friday, biting cold moved through the mid-Atlantic region, complicating repair work.

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Utility companies reported more than 325,000 customers without power in Pennsylvania, along with about 50,000 in Maryland. Officials have said they expected some of the work will have to continue through the weekend before power is fully restored.

PECO, the dominant electricity provider in the Philadelphia area, reports more than 288,000 customers out Friday morning in the five-county area. First Energy has about 27,550, almost all in York County. PPL reported 5,728 outages, most of them in Lancaster County.

Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Corbett toured the area by air on Thursday.

"This storm is in some respects as bad or maybe even worse than Hurricane Sandy," Corbett told reporters during an appearance in the Philadelphia suburbs. Earlier in the week, he had declared an emergency.

A third storm is forming in parts of the lower Midwest and is likely to hit the Northeast by the weekend and into the early part of next week.

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