Erie County receives 3 feet of snow as Buffalo braces for ‘historic’ winter storm

Residents of Buffalo and other parts of New York state woke up Friday morning Heavy snowfall Officials warn that hard-hit communities could be “paralysed”.

As of Friday morning, Erie County, home to Buffalo, had seen three feet of snow in areas like Orchard Park, 33 inches in Hamburg and about 19.5 inches in southeast Buffalo.

The “historic” winter storm brings so-called lake-effect ice, which occurs when arctic winds race over the relatively temperate waters of the Great Lakes.

Lake-effect snow is more likely through Friday, with snowfall rates of 2 to 3 inches per hour and the possibility of “thunderstorms” accompanied by snow.

The National Weather Service warned early Friday that heavy snow would cause “near-zero visibility, nearly impossible travel and damage to infrastructure.”

A person crosses Ellicott Street due to snow in Buffalo, NY, Friday. Joshua Pessex / AB

The snow began Thursday and continued overnight, threatening to bury Buffalo in more than 4 feet of “historic snowfall,” the service said in an update Friday morning.

After Buffalo saw high temperatures in the 60s last week, it warned, “Very cold air will accompany the event this weekend with temperatures 20 degrees below normal forecast.”

There is buffalo declared a state of emergencyMeanwhile, Governor Kathy Hochul did the same 11 districts in the western and northwestern parts of the state Close to Lake Erie and Lake Ontario.

“This is a life-threatening storm,” he told a news conference Thursday, adding that state officials were ready to conduct rescues.

Erie County, including south of Buffalo, has issued a driving ban Tweet From Erie County Executive Mark Poloncarz.

“Conditions are dire in the Pan zone,” Bollencarz said. “Don’t drive. It’s hindering our efforts to clear the snow.”

“Only authorized persons should drive for emergency travel” District Administrator Mark Bolancarz tweeted On Thursday, he indicated that the ban would be reevaluated on Friday.

Commercial traffic was blocked on parts of some major roadways, including the New York State Thruway, also known as Interstate 90. Meanwhile, Sunday’s NFL game was between the home team, the Buffalo Bills and the Cleveland Browns. Went to Detroit.

As the planet has warmed due to an increase in greenhouse gases, the lakes have warmed, which means more evaporation in the atmosphere in winter. This has led to an increase in lake-effect snow, but that trend is not expected to last.

A recent study used a regional climate model to examine these changes in lake-effect ice if current rates of greenhouse gas emissions continue. By midcentury, the amount of seasonal lake-effect ice is projected to increase modestly, as the Great Lakes become ice-free in winter.

However, as the air warms, the amount of snow is expected to decrease during late fall and early spring, and precipitation will fall as rain. By the end of the century, the frequency of extreme cold in the Great Lakes is expected to decrease significantly. Similarly, lake temperatures are expected to increase further, with a warming environment implying increased precipitation at the expense of snow in winter.

Lake-effect ice warnings were in effect early Friday for the Buffalo and downwind portions of Lake Ontario, the weather service said.


Bill Health And Brittany Cubicco Contributed.

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