Cold Winter Weather Threatens Safety and Causes Major Problems

Hundreds of thousands still without power, black ice, risks for CO poisoning and roofs collapsing.
3:00 | 02/06/14

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Transcript for Cold Winter Weather Threatens Safety and Causes Major Problems
We're following two major weather headlines. In the west, the system hitting tonight, after all those warnings about the vanishing water supply. First, the misery from the midwest to the northeast. First, the storm, single-digit temperatures moving in. This from Maryland tonight. The power lines turning to icicles. In Philadelphia, the state of emergency in Pennsylvania tonight. Hundreds of thousands spending this evening in the dark, as those temperatures now plummet. A virtual obstacle course for American drivers. Everywhere, power grids pushed to the brink. This sign reads, sorry, power out. Hospitals, in fact, forced to take drastic action. And now, that third storm on the way. ABC meteorologist ginger zee with the forecast. But first, gio Benitez, tonight, on the black ice worries. Reporter: Tonight, the storm after the storm. After that winter blast dumped nearly a foot of snow and ice from Kansas to Maine. Freezing cold. And a race to restore power. Officials comparing the damage to the aftermath of a hurricane. Trees down for a hundred miles. Nearly 500,000 in the dark and frigid cold. It's slow, painstaking work. Watch as the workers try and pull a live wire away from a van. Slowly guiding it with a pole. Soon, the van is smoking. And out come the fire extinguishers. At least 25 people hospitalized overnight with carbon monoxide poisoning. Doing things like operating generators indoors. Operating gas grills and charcoal grills inside. Reporter: Hundreds in shelters. This is a humbling experience, coming to a shelter. But they've been wonderful. Reporter: Near Pittsburgh, a roof collapse trapped a man for days. He was finally rescued this morning. In New York City, J.M. Legend auto group's security cameras caught this man walking as he gets flattened by a wall of snow from that plow. Watch again from the inside. On the roads, all of the melting and freezing is causing a lot of black ice. Black ice forms on the ground temperature is 32 degrees or lower. When rain or sleet or melted snow hits it, it freezes instantly. And tonight, all of the snow is completely frozen. And take a look. This is the danger. All of this ice. The exhaust pipe is completely covered up. So, if the owner of this car starts it up without clearing this ice, they run the risk of carbon monoxide poisoning. Our thanks to you. I want to bring in ginger zee. The cold, locking all of this ice, all of the snow in place. Yeah. It's not going anywhere. And the core of the cold air is really settling in tomorrow morning. Let me show you. More than 80% of the nation tomorrow morning will be below freezing, David. And you can see, it's all the way through the pacific northwest. Portland, Oregon, may even have a record low. That's bad. But a lot of folks have been worried about the weekend, hearing about some storms. I wanted to tell you, let's go through. Saturday, 7:00 A.M. You can see the low pressure system in the southeast. That kind of goes up. Had these two come together, we would have been talking about a big storm. Right now, we're looking like little hits of snow. Not as bad as it could have been. Out west tonight, some relief with the governor there suggesting conserving your water already. They've been in a deficit. San Francisco, about a foot deficit. They got an inch today. That's huge for them. It's not a drought-buster. But it's there. The pineapple express. This atmospheric river of moisture, pouring. This is through the weekend, up to five inches in some of those areas in red. Good weather news tonight for a change. Ginger, we'll be watching you tomorrow on "Gma."

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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