Other fatalities were caused by the specific weather hazards affecting different regions, including icy conditions in Texas, a strong tornado in Alabama, and extreme winds in Louisiana, which were so strong that a trailer was lifted into the air and carried hundreds of feet away. Dallas police said one person died when a auto flipped into Five Mile Creek west of downtown Dallas about 7 p.m.
Earlier on Friday afternoon, a tornado destroyed two homes near Fair Play, Missouri, about 35 miles (56 kilometres) northwest of Springfield.
An already deadly line of powerful storms is bearing down on the eastern half of the United States, threatening risky winds and tornadoes in the South and potentially crippling snow and ice in the Midwest through the weekend, with heavy rain and flooding in between. There were no injuries reported from the storm and the building was not occupied.
The NWS based in Birmingham, Alabama, tweeted that three people had been killed near Carrollton in Pickens County. According to an Entergy spokesman: approximately 2,600 customers lost power in the El Dorado/Camden area but most have since had power restored.
Ahead of the storms, the Dallas Office of Emergency Management asked residents to bring in pets, outdoor furniture, grills, "and anything else that could be caught up in high winds to reduce the risk of flying debris".
Snow, sleet and freezing rain are expected in parts of Oklahoma, eastern Kansas, Missouri, northern IL, eastern Iowa, southern Wisconsin and much of MI. He told KTBS-TV that this wasn't the first time he'd seen storms like this.
Texas Governor, Greg Abbott, claimed helicopters, medical and rescue teams had been placed on standby in case they are needed.
Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey said Friday the state was making necessary preparations ahead of the potential weather. The National Weather Service issued a watch Saturday afternoon for parts of Georgia, North Carolina and SC until midnight EST.
The weather service issued a winter weather advisory, flood watch and lake-shore flood warning for the Chicago metropolitan area for Saturday and a winter storm warning for adjacent areas of north-western IL.
Many northern visitors flock to the area to escape the cold during winter.