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A Christmas Ice Storm

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A massive storm swept across the Midwest and parts of Canada yesterday, encasing everything in thick ice, downing trees and power lines, and making travel nearly impossible just before Christmas. An estimated 500,000 people are without power today, as utility crews work to clear and repair the lines before the temperature drops even further in the coming days. Below are images of the storm's aftermath from Ontario and Quebec. [17 photos]

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A layer of ice coats the leaves of a Japanese maple tree after an ice storm in Toronto, Ontario, on December 22, 2013. (Reuters/Chris Helgren)
A layer of ice coats the leaves of a Japanese maple tree after an ice storm in Toronto, Ontario, on December 22, 2013. (Reuters/Chris Helgren)
A snowman after the ice storm in Ontario. Original here. (CC BY Angus Chan) #
An ice-encased sign in Brampton, Ontario. Original here. (CC BY SA Ryan M. Gilchrist) #
People walk past fallen ice-covered tree limbs along a road following an ice storm in Toronto, on December 22, 2013. (Reuters/Mark Blinch) #
Tree branches encased in ice following an ice storm in Toronto, on December 22, 2013. (Reuters/Bob Strong) #
Outdoor Christmas ornaments, following an ice storm in Toronto, on December 22, 2013. (Reuters/Bob Strong) #
Warren Milne builds an igloo out of ice on his front lawn following an ice storm in Toronto, on December 22, 2013. (Reuters/Mark Blinch) #
Icicles hang from a signal light and a street sign after freezing rain in Toronto, Ontario, on December 22, 2013. (Reuters/Hyungwon Kang) #
An inflatable Santa Claus, deflated due to a power outage, after an ice storm hit Toronto, on December 22, 2013. (Reuters/Mark Blinch) #
Berries encrusted in ice, during an ice storm in Toronto, on December 22, 2013. (Reuters/Gary Hershorn) #
A woman's hair, blasted by the wind during a snowstorm in Quebec City, on December 22, 2013. (Reuters/Mathieu Belanger) #
Tree branches encased in ice, following an ice storm in Toronto, on December 22, 2013. (Reuters/Bob Strong) #
A bicycle is covered with ice after freezing rain in Toronto, on December 22, 2013. (Reuters/Hyungwon Kang) #
The tip of a tree branch encased in ice in Toronto, on December 22, 2013. (Reuters/Bob Strong) #
Cars drive by a fallen tree limb hanging from a power line following an ice storm in Toronto, on December 22, 2013. (Reuters/Mark Blinch) #
Tree branches and leaves in Toronto, on December 22, 2013. (Reuters/Bob Strong) #
After the ice storm in Toronto, December 22, 2013. [Scraping sounds in background] (Reuters/Gary Hershorn) #

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