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Polar vortex eases grip on frozen US

January 10, 2014 12:30 IST

Polar vortex eases grip on frozen US

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The United States is warming up from the polar vortex.

As it continued its northward retreat, the arctic blast still held sway over the upper Midwest, where it bore down with below-zero lows early Friday.

This should be its last stand in the United States, as temperatures bump up day by day, the National Weather Service said.

However, the bone-chilling cold, snow and ice that gripped much of the country -- affecting about 200 million people -- brought about the biggest economic disruption delivered by the weather since superstorm Sandy in 2012.

The crippling cold has left at least 21 people dead, including seven in Illinois and six in Indiana.

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Image: Ice floes fill the Hudson River as the New Jersey waterfront is seen during sunset on January 9, 2014 in New York City
Photographs: Afton Almaraz/Getty Images

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Polar vortex eases grip on frozen US

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A woman bundles up against the cold in New York City

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Photographs: Andrew Burton/Getty Images

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Polar vortex eases grip on frozen US

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A commuter ferry navigates through the ice flow in the Hudson River between New Jersey and lower Manhattan in New York

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Photographs: Brendan McDermid/Reuters

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Polar vortex eases grip on frozen US

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The frozen US side of the Niagara Falls is pictured in Ontario

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Photographs: Aaron Harris/Reuters

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Polar vortex eases grip on frozen US

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Kids climb into a car to be driven to school in sub-zero temperatures in Minneapolis. Schools in Minneapolis reopened after being closed for two days due to dangerously low temperatures and wind chills

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Photographs: Eric Miller/Reuters

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Polar vortex eases grip on frozen US

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A snow covered scooter is seen in Chicago, Illinois

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Photographs: Jim Young/Reuters

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Polar vortex eases grip on frozen US

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Aldo, a pet dog, leaps through the snow as he runs after his owner, Cyril River, who skates on a Lake of the Isles in Minneapolis

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Photographs: Eric Miller/Reuters

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Polar vortex eases grip on frozen US

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Ice flows jam the Delaware River in Trenton, New Jersey

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Photographs: Carlo Allegri/Reuters

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A local police car blocks an intersection where water and ice form from a water main break in Silver Spring, Maryland

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Photographs: Carlo Allegri/Reuters

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