By: Hannah Stoughton
Nov. 18th, 2022: After a ruthless snowstorm moved into New York, some parts of the state have been left buried under two feet of snow, with more expected as the lake-effect snowstorm moves in.
Parts of northwest New York woke up to blankets of snow measuring up to two feet, and more is expected in some areas, as a snowstorm with peculiar patterns moves in. The severity varied due to the snowstorm dumping in narrow bands. Lake-effect storms are caused by cold temperatures picking up moisture from warmer lakes, causing massive amounts of snow to build up before releasing.
On top of the large amounts of snow in parts of Buffalo, residents have been facing heavy winds as well. Despite the severity of Buffalo, residents only a few miles north received just inches, creating an odd dynamic in Northwest New York. The south end of Buffalo, however, saw the worst of the snowfall so far. They received the worst of the effects, being closer to Lake Erie and being the first to see the snowfall from the lake-effect. Two feet of snow have been reported in areas near Lake Erie. Hamburg, New York saw almost 34 inches.
The effects of heavy snowfall can be widespread and difficult for citizens of New York. Schools were closed, and the Amtrak, the subway system, in Buffalo, Niagara Falls, and Depew closed, leaving many without a way to travel to and from each place.
The Governor of New York Kathy Hochul declared a state of emergency for Eastern New York, with 11 counties being covered and traffic on Interstate 90 being banned. “I am so proud of Western New Yorkers for heeding our call to stay off the roads last night; it was treacherous,” Hochul told the radio station WBEN. “As a result, we were able to salt, we were able to clear the roads better than we would’ve if they had been filled with traffic, and we really avoided a large number of accidents.”
One of the major concerns has been access to healthcare facilities. Catholic Health, a facility that has multiple operations within the area of the zone, has stated that they have been preparing for days, anticipating a difficult situation. Spokeswoman JoAnn Cavanaugh has illustrated her pride for the organization, saying, “Our staff has really stepped up and people have been making every effort to et in where they can. Some associates are spending the night, and everybody is helping everybody. We’ve made sure our supplies are stocked – food and things for our patients as well as associates. We have everything we need on hand.”
Parts of Michigan and Northeast Pennsylvania are also seeing the effects, with some areas getting more snow than southern parts of the state.
The snowfall in New York is expected to last all the way through Friday and into Saturday and Sunday. Many are anticipating high levels of snowfall and are preparing to potentially relocate temporarily, waiting out the storm.