Buffalo Snowstorm 2022: Lake Effect Snow Buries Buffalo, New York

BUFFALO, New York — Piles of snow, in some places taller than most people, blanketed parts of western and northern New York as a lake-effect storm pummeled areas east of Lake Erie and Lake Ontario for a third straight day Saturday, with more likely .

Total snowfall reached 77 inches (196 centimeters) in the Buffalo suburb of Orchard Park, home of the NFL’s Buffalo Bills. On the other side of the state, the town of Natural Bridge, near Fort Drum Army Base, reported just under 6 feet (1.8 meters).

Snowfall in some places was among the highest ever recorded in the area, rivaling the staggering amounts that fell during similar storms in 2014 and 1945.

The snowfall totals, which began accumulating Thursday night in some places, “will be on the order of historic not only for any time of the year, but for any part of the country,” said National Weather Service meteorologist Frank Pereira of the headquarters NWS in College Park, Maryland.

The lake-effect storm, caused by cold air absorbing moisture from warmer lakes, created narrow bands of windblown snow that dumped feet of snow on some communities while leaving towns a short drive away relatively unscathed.

It caused chaos on some roads as trucks that took to smaller back roads to avoid closing parts of the interstate in the area ended up in a massive traffic jam that Erie County Executive Mark Poloncarz described on social media as “Tractor Trailer Demonstration Day”. “

It also wreaked havoc on the wedding plans of Robert Junge and Maria Scheglowski, who chose that day for their wedding after getting engaged exactly a year ago.

Their reception venue has been cancelled, rescheduled for next week. The musician they hired for their church ceremony also couldn’t make it, along with more than half of the expected 180 guests.

But they were determined, using one of two limousines they hired to drive the bride to the church while Junge drove alone.

“Nothing was going to stop me from marrying her no matter what,” Junge, 35, of North Tonawanda, N.Y., told The Associated Press.

On the bright side, he said, the snow “will make for some beautiful pictures.”

Snow forced the National Football League to move Sunday’s game between the Bills and the Cleveland Browns to Detroit.

Partial sunshine and a break from the snow came to some of the hardest-hit areas south of downtown Buffalo on Saturday as snow bands moved north.

Forecasters predicted a few more inches could fall overnight Saturday into Sunday, although Pereira said it was likely that different areas of the region would be affected, rather than totals increasing too much in areas that have already seen the most. the heavy snows.

Gov. Cathy Hochul deployed about 70 members of the National Guard to help clear snow in some of the hardest-hit areas.

Poloncarz tweeted that two people in the Buffalo area had died “related to exertional cardiac events while paddling/snowblowing.”

Lake effect also piled up to 2 feet (0.6 meters) of snow in some Michigan communities south of Lake Superior and east of Lake Michigan.

A snow plow driver in the town of Hamlet, Indiana, was killed Friday when his plow skidded off the pavement and overturned, according to the Stark County Sheriff’s Department. Hamlet is about 30 miles (48 kilometers) from Lake Michigan.

Buffalo has a history of dramatic lake-effect snowstorms, few worse than the one that hit in November 2014. That epic storm dumped 7 feet (2 meters) of snow on some communities over three days, collapsing roofs and trapping drivers in more than 100 vehicles on a coastal stretch of New York State Highway.

SEE ALSO: To Weather or Not with Lee Goldberg: Winter Weather Forecast


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