13 People Are Killed by a Blizzard in the Buffalo, New York, Area

13 People Are Killed by a Blizzard in the Buffalo, New York, Area

A Blizzard kills 13 People in the Buffalo, New York, Area: On Christmas Day, a deadly blizzard paralyzed Buffalo, New York, trapping drivers and rescuers in their cars, knocking out electricity to thousands of homes, and adding to the toll from storms that have been chilling much of the country for days.

According to an NBC News count, at least 30 people have perished in weather-related accidents across the United States since a deep chill swept much of the country on Friday, along with snow, ice, and strong winds from a massive storm that roared out of the Great Lakes region.

As biting cold and heavy “lake-effect” snow lingered into the holiday weekend, most of the fatalities were concentrated in and around Buffalo, located on the western tip of Lake Erie in western New York. This snow is caused by cold air passing over warmer lake waters.

According to Mark Poloncarz, the executive of Erie County, the number of storm-related fatalities rose to 13 on Sunday from the three recorded overnight in the Buffalo area. According to Poloncarz, the latest victims included those discovered in cars and others in snow banks. He also predicted that there would likely be more fatalities.

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None of us expected or hoped for this Christmas, “On Sunday, Poloncarz posted on Twitter. “I offer the families of those who have lost loved ones my sincere sympathies.” The deadliest winter storm to hit the greater Buffalo area since a severe blizzard in 1977 that killed nearly 30 people, according to New York Governor Kathy Hochul, was described as an “epic, once-in-a-lifetime” weather calamity.

Hochul stated at a news conference that evening that “we have now surpassed the scale of the storm, in its severity, the endurance, and the fury of its winds,” adding that the current storm will undoubtedly be remembered as “the blizzard of ’22.”


Nearly six weeks had passed since the last snowstorm, a record-breaking but brief lake-effect storm that hit western New York. Hundreds of drivers in Erie County were left stranded in their cars over the weekend despite the travel prohibition that has been in effect since Friday, according to Poloncarz.

The National Guard was called in to assist with rescue efforts but was hampered by whiteout conditions and drifting snow. He told reporters that numerous snow plows and other equipment sent out on Saturday and Sunday became buried in the snow, and “we had to deploy rescue missions to rescue the rescuers.”

Those who “have a snowmobile and are willing to help” are asked to phone a hotline for instructions, according to a request for help made online by the Buffalo police department. The storm’s ferocity was noteworthy evenĀ for a region used to severe winter weather.

Christina Klaffka, a 39-year-old resident of North Buffalo, heard “hurricane-like winds” rattling her windows as she witnessed her neighbor’s roof’s shingles fly off. On Saturday night, she and her entire neighborhood lost power; on Sunday morning, they were still without it.

I was trying to watch the Buffalo Bills and Chicago Bears game, but my TV kept flickering. Shortly after the third quarter, I lost power, “She spoke. North Buffalo retiree John Burns, 58, claimed that the storm and “mean and nasty” weather kept him and his family locked in their home for 36 hours.

“Nothing was open. Nobody even took their dogs for a walk, “explained he. “For two days, nothing happened.” He continued that it was difficult to estimate snowfall totals because of the strong gusts that prevented accumulation between houses but built up a 5-foot (1.5-meter) drift “in front of my garage.”

Hochul informed the media on Sunday that her request for a federal disaster declaration had been approved by the Biden administration. According to Hochul, about 200 members of the National Guard were dispatched to western New York to assist emergency responders, conduct health inspections, and provide shelter supplies.


After forcing thousands of commercial flights to be canceled during the busy holiday travel season and knocking down electricity to up to 1.5 million customers at its peak late last week, the more extensive storm system was moving east on Sunday.

According to PowerOutage.us, more than 150,000 households and businesses in the United States remained without power on Sunday, significantly decreasing from the 1.8 million without electricity as of early Saturday. According to Poloncarz, 15,000 Buffalo residents were still without electricity as of Sunday night.

He claimed that one electricity substation shut down was frozen inside and had been sealed off by an 18-foot snow pile.

Christmas Day temperatures in the central and eastern United States remained far below average and below freezing even as far south as the Gulf Coast, according to National Weather Service (NWS) meteorologist Rich Otto, although starting to rise from the widespread near-zero readings on Saturday.

According to the most recent NWS calculation, the Buffalo airport measured close to 4 feet of snow by Sunday. Whiteout conditions persisted south of Buffalo into the afternoon as persistent squalls deposited 2-3 inches of snow every hour.

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While at least four people were killed and numerous others were injured in car accidents in Ohio, where a 50-vehicle pileup during a blizzard on Friday shut down the Ohio Turnpike, officials in Kentucky have verified three storm-related deaths since Friday. According to press reports, further fatalities were attributed to excessive cold or weather-related car accidents in Missouri, Tennessee, Kansas, and Colorado.