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US East Coast shivers in New Year Big Freeze

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US East Coast shivers in New Year Big Freeze

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The big freeze continues to wreak havoc on the East Coast of the United States, with wind chills forecast to fall as low as minus 40 degrees Celsius in places.

The storm that delivered the wintry deluge has battered coastal communities in Massachusetts.

In the beach town of Revere, near Boston, frozen floodwaters left an entire street full of parked cars trapped in ice, in images captured on video posted to social media.

Travelling by air hasn't been easy either. On Friday, more than 1,300 US flights had been cancelled by the afternoon, most of them at the New York area's three major airports and Boston Logan International.

The weather has been blamed for at least 18 deaths in the past few days and temperatures are set to plunge further, with the cold snap for Americans far from over.

The storm that swept in on Thursday with gusts of more than 113 km per hour, dumped 56 cms of snow in parts of Maine and 43 cm in parts of Massachusetts, before ending on Friday, the National Weather Service said.

It was powered by a rapid drop in barometric pressure that some weather forecasters called a bombogenesis, or a "bomb cyclone".

Now though the bitter cold remains, with forecasts of record lows to come.

Cities from Houston to Boston have stepped up efforts to bring the homeless to shelters. Authorities said that three homeless people in Texas died from exposure to the cold.