Nov. 29 (UPI) -- Black Friday shoppers from the West and Upper Midwest through New England faced blizzard conditions and hazardous weather to get out for traditional holiday store hopping.
The National Weather Service said that a low-pressure system caused widespread heavy snow across the country, from the West into the Northern Plains and Midwest, accompanied in some areas with freezing rain and high winds.
Heavy rainfall and some severe weather occurred locally farther south in the Southwest to Plains to Mississippi, Tennessee, and Ohio Valley.
One of the nation's big holiday trouble spots was Minneapolis, where forecasters expected 4 to 9 inches of snow on from Friday to Sunday after a weather system dumped nearly 10 inches on the area days before Thanksgiving.
On Thanksgiving Day, four children died in a car crash in Republic County, Kansas, after a vehicle they were in left the roadway and veered into a pond.
First responders found an injured man and woman at the scene north of 30 Road and U-36 Highway. The children who died ranged in age from 8 months to 12 years, died at the scene, the Kansas Highway Patrol said.
Authorities the accident remains under investigation.
In the south, Albuquerque and Santa Fe, N.M., were hit with several inches of snow going into the holiday. Four inches of snow fell on Flagstaff, Ariz., in the matter of an hour early Friday. Another 8 inches fell over a large region from the northern Rocky Mountains to Michigan's Upper Peninsula.
"As the cold front tracks eastward, rain and thunderstorms will move across the Southern/Central Plains into the Mississippi Valley Friday, then into the Ohio and Tennessee Valleys Friday night into Saturday," the National Weather Service said.
"Some heavy rainfall is possible in these areas,with concerns of localized flash flooding. Additionally, severe weather is possible, particularly on Saturday in East Texas to the Lower Mississippi Valley," the service added.
AccuWeather's manager of business intelligence, Rosemary Yielding Radich, said the inclement weather maybe not good for brick-and-mortar stores but a boon to online sales.
"It's safe to say that Cyber Monday sales will increase," Radich said. "Especially in areas like the Northeast, where highs will be in the 30s and 40s and areas in the Southeast slated to experience rainy conditions."