As one of the most severe winter storms in the region’s recorded history continues to batter western New York residents, the amount of snow that is falling continues to accumulate, and the number of people who have been injured continues to rise.
According to some accounts, the number of fatalities stood at 27 as of the early afternoon of Monday, although Erie County Executive Mark Poloncarz put the figure at 25. Earlier, he had mentioned that there was a possibility of further fatalities that had not yet been determined to be storm-related.
The mayor of Buffalo, Byron Brown, stated that the police had found 18 bodies throughout the city. Brown stated that this storm had been challenging and hazardous to deal with.
People who were stranded in their vehicles and died of hypothermia were responsible for some of the fatalities that occurred. At a press conference, Governor Kathy Hochul stated that other storms are expected to hit the state in the near future.
Hochul stated that “as much as we can see in the sky, we know the storm is coming again,” and he went on to say that the forecast is for “another six to 12 inches” of snow. It is “far too early” to say that the storm itself is a thing of the past, according to the governor, even though it appears that the worst of the storm may be over.
Hochul further stated that she has been working with the administration of Vice President Joe Biden to acquire federal resources to assist and that she has asked for a federal declaration of emergency.
The National Weather Service said that the temperature in Buffalo was 16 degrees early on Monday morning, and snow continued to fall throughout the day. Poloncarz informed the public that a driving prohibition would continue to be enforced in the following municipalities: Buffalo, Lackawant to, Amherst, Cheektowaga, Clarence, Evans, Hamburg, Orchard Park, and West Seneca. He stated that the restriction would be lifted in other areas of the county beginning at seven in the morning on Monday.
He mentioned that the New York State Thruway and route both remained closed. During this period of subzero temperatures, the Empire State has also been beset by power disruptions. As of the beginning of the work week on Monday, National Grid stated that 13,377 people had lost power due to outages, with 12,426 of those persons being located in Erie County.
According to Poloncarz, “very good progress has been made,” as the number of people in Erie County without electricity had decreased dramatically since Sunday morning, when there were 26,404 people without power.
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