Buffalo region continues to be bombarded with lake-effect snow – Record-setting storm buries western New York in more than 6 feet of snow, triggering road closures and flight cancellations

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Buffalo snow storm November 18-19 2022
Buffalo region continues to be bombarded with lake-effect snow in record-setting storm. Picture via Facebook

New Yorkers in the western part of the state are still being slammed with a massive snowstorm that has shut down roads, triggered driving bans and canceled flights the weekend before the Thanksgiving holiday.

By Friday evening, 5.5 feet of snow had covered streets in the town of Orchard Park, New York, near Buffalo in hard-hit Erie County, according to the National Weather Service.

As the snowfall intensified, two county residents died from cardiac complications related to shoveling and attempting to clear the grounds, said County Executive Mark Poloncarz.

“We send our deepest sympathies and remind all that this snow is very heavy and dangerous,” Poloncarz said.

Forecasters and officials have been sounding the alarm on the life-threatening nature of this snowstorm, which has the potential to be historic even for the Buffalo region where heavy snow is the norm during winter months. And the forceful snowfall is expected to continue through the weekend with little periods of relief.

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“Historic snowfall exceeding 4 feet will be possible south of Buffalo, New York. Very cold air will accompany this event with temperatures 20 degrees below normal forecast by the weekend,” the National Weather Service wrote Friday.

Areas northeast of Lake Ontario – from central Jefferson County to northern Lewis County – were being inundated with heavy snow late Friday, when the snowfall rate was up to 3 inches per hour, according to the weather service in Buffalo. Places between Watertown and Harrisville were also seeing treacherous conditions.

“Travel will be extremely difficult, if not nearly impossible. … Visibility will be near zero at times with deep snow cover on roads,” the local weather service warned.

Dozens of flights arriving and departing from Buffalo Niagara International Airport were canceled as storm conditions worsened, according to the airport’s website.

A rare “snownado” was spotted over Lake Erie Friday…

A new daily snowfall record of 13.9 inches Saturday was set at the airport, nearly doubling the 7.6 inches seen on the same date in 2014, according to the local weather service. This month is also Buffalo’s third snowiest November, with 29.3 inches recorded for the entire month, the weather service added.

Heavy snow is expected to continue smashing the Buffalo region early Saturday, with some respite Saturday afternoon as the storm moves farther north. A final bout is expected through Saturday evening and into the overnight hours before snow tapers off early Sunday.

County official: Do not ignore travel bans

The colossal storm has been pounding the region for days, prompting local and state officials to issue states of emergencies to bolster response. But with a storm that big, it only takes one or two vehicles to slow down clearing operations, Poloncarz noted.

“A reminder to all employers: if your business is located in a driving ban area or your employees are currently in a driving ban area, it is illegal to make them come into work,” Poloncarz said online.

The snowstorm, which came with a forecast for the Buffalo region not seen in more than 20 years, has been making travel miserable for many drivers, despite authorities’ emphasis on staying off the roads.

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“I can say that our deputies have been just absolutely inundated with calls for service as it pertains to disabled motor vehicles and stranded motorists,” Erie County Undersheriff William J. Cooley said during a news conference Friday night. “We implore the residents to just, please, obey the travel ban, you become part of the problem very quickly when you’re out there on the streets.”

Erie County issued a combination of travel bans and travel advisories that remain in effect as of 9 p.m. Friday, including a travel ban for the southern portion of Buffalo.

“This is an event that has hit the south towns with a vengeance, very hard and all these communities are in a state of emergency at this point,” Poloncarz said.

More than 300 citations were issued to drivers who violated the travel ban, Poloncarz said late Friday.

“Please, do not be the reason that an ambulance cannot get to the hospital,” he said. “There are many vehicles that are not only getting stuck but are just being abandoned by the owners.”

Poloncarz underscored the danger the storm is unleashing in communities, pointing out the impacts of heavy snow that are exacerbated by sheets of ice underneath it.

“There are vehicles stuck on roads who should not be driving. There are even some snow plows getting stuck in the worst parts of the storm. Do not drive if there is a travel ban,” said Poloncarz, adding that most residents have adhered to the ban.

Snow has been falling for an extended period of time at rapid pace, making it difficult for crews to respond.

“In some cases, we are going to far surpass five feet of snow and that’s in a 21-hour period of time,” said Bill Geary, the county’s public works commissioner. “It’s a remarkable amount of time.”

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Blasdell, about eight miles from Buffalo, recorded 65 inches as of 8:30 p.m Friday, according to the National Weather Service. Several locations in the region were hit with at least 3 to 4 feet of snow, including Hamburg (51 inches), Elma (48 inches), East Aurora (43.7 inches) and West Seneca (36 inches). [CNN, NY Post, CBS News]

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3 Comments

  1. The country of Iran has descended into chaos and murder tonight. Reports are FLOODING IN about ongoing explosions and gunfire in Tehran and, at the same time, a report of GENOCIDE being carried out against Kurds by Iranian Army forces in the city of Mahabad.

    We begin coverage with a series of large explosions and almost non-stop gunfire taking place right now in the Iranian capital city of Tehran.

    Social media is lit-up with video showing the ongoing explosions, gunfire and chaos:

    ⚡️🇮🇷Reports of STRONG explosion in Tehran, Iran. pic.twitter.com/kreXCaKm3P
    — dana (@dana916) November 19, 2022

    Six loud explosions were heard west of the capital Tehran.

    MAHABAD – Genocide in Progress???

    But the real trouble seems to be unfolding in the Iranian city of Mahabad, shown on a scalable map below:

    According to eye-witnesses on the ground there, Iranian military forces are going door-to-door, rounding up people the government doesn’t like, taking them into the street and shooting them dead.

    Screams and ongoing gunfire fill the city.

    Nov 19—#Mahabad, NW Iran
    This is not a horror movie, this is Mahabad minutes ago!
    – The electricity has been cut off
    – Tanks have been deployed
    – Kalashnikovs and guns are in hands of security forces (terrorists)
    – People have no weapons to fight back. pic.twitter.com/wVDSN7CUv3
    — دیزل پست (@dizelpost) November 19, 2022

    Power has been cut in Mahabad and they are bringing weapons of war to murder Iranian Kurds. An Iranian Kurd wrote;”we gave our blood for all of Iran, please don’t leave us alone!” #مهاباد #Kurdistan #WestAzerbaiJan #Iran #MahsaAmini #ToomajSalehi pic.twitter.com/EDj4q3ei5d
    — MCS (@PowerMcs) November 19, 2022

    Iranian military vehicles, including tanks, are on the streets of Mahabad.

    The Islamic Republic has attacked the city of #Mahabad with heavy artillery and is shooting at the houses of innocent people! The Islamic Republic is slaughtering innocent people! Be the voice of the people of Mahabad!#MahsaAmini#IranRevolution pic.twitter.com/AeKvL7jIpo
    — Amin Pouria ممد پوری (@mamadporii) November 19, 2022

    The government has cut off all electricity and Internet connectivity in Mahabad.

    🔵فوری
    ‼️#مهاباد
    یک لحظه صدای گلوله ها قطع نمی شه
    مردم درب منازل خود را باز بگذارید.
    جنایت نیزار ماهشهر در حال تکرار شدن در مهاباد است
    سپاه داره با رگبار بدون وقفه در خیابان ها شلیک میکند
    🔵اشتراک فوری pic.twitter.com/4t3Nbe4EL9
    — EP (@2500EP) November 19, 2022

    Social media is saying there is a “Genocide” taking place there; Kurdish people seem to be the focus of government killing tonight, throughout the city.

    We thank Steve Quayle and Hal Turner Brother so much what happens in Iran is testing grounds for what is coming to USA and Europe, Russia and China and World. PREAPRE PREAPRE!!

  2. We are in final stages of World War 3 that can happen at any time of day or night. If you are not prepared then shame on you. World Martial Law is in full progress and Iran is now is Martial Law and Russia is Martial Law , Ukraine is Martial Law names of nations going on to list are many,,, So again
    if you are not prepared for any state of Emergency any where in world guess shame on you as well.
    Weather HAARP are responsible for all these masses.. If you are not prepared for the weather emergencies again shame on you.

  3. Amazing! How quickly government officials implemented a travel ban! After this covid scamdemic they feel they are emboldened to do whatever they want to do and then monetize it with fines and with no repercussions! Granted there are some stupid people that have no common sense that do not have common sense to stay home, but that’s still no excuse for this type of behavior by government officials. I never seen Buffalo implement travel bans in the past for the same type of event, but now it’s okay to do that and make money off of fines! Then telling businesses it’s against the law for them to tell their employees they have to come to work! Another color of the law power grab! Next thing you know they will be implementing travel bans for high winds! So, now they went from snow emergencies to travel bans! What a scam!

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