Brutal storm keeping frigid grip on much of Northeast as Buffalo struggles to cope

More snow is expected in parts of western New York already buried by what officials are calling a “once-in-a-generation” winter storm. The frigid weather in the eastern United States will continue until milder temperatures arrive on Wednesday, forecasters say. Residents of the Buffalo area are grappling with massive snowdrifts, roaring emergency vehicles and leaving some residents trapped in their homes and cars. continue.

At least 53 people have died across the United States from the devastating storms.

Extreme weather has cut power to tens of thousands of homes and businesses, ranging from the Great Lakes near Canada to the Rio Grande along the border with Mexico. About 60% of the US population faced some kind of winter weather advisory or warning, with temperatures well below normal from east of the Rocky Mountains to the Appalachian Mountains.

An ambulance stranded on the road after a winter storm hit the Buffalo area of ​​Amherst, New York, on December 25, 2022.

Stringer / Reuters

“Lake-effect snow will continue northeast of Lake Erie and Lake Ontario through Tuesday,” the National Weather Service said Monday morning. “An additional build-up of 6 to 12 inches off Buffalo and nearby Lake Erie and 1 to 2 feet is expected in Jefferson and northern Lewis counties.”

This is particularly unwelcome news for Buffalo, where the hurricane’s high winds and snow caused whiteout conditions that paralyzed emergency response efforts and claimed the lives of at least 14 people in the city, according to Mayor Byron Brown’s office. said Monday morning.

At least 25 people have died across Erie County, where Buffalo is located, county administrator Mark Polonkers said at a briefing Monday.

New York Governor Kathy Hochul, who called in the National Guard, said nearly all fire trucks in Buffalo were stranded Saturday and pleaded with people to respect the ongoing driving ban in the area on Sunday. said the airport will be closed until Tuesday morning.

Deadly storm leaves many trapped and stranded


A huge snowdrift has nearly covered the cars, and there are thousands of houses, some decorated with holiday displays that don’t have electricity, and are underpowered and dark.

With snow swirling over pristine, impassable streets, forecasters warned that an additional foot or two of snow could fall in some areas by Monday morning in gusts of 40 mph winds. Police said there were two “isolated” cases of looting during the storm on Sunday night.

Plow gets stuck when it snows in Buffalo
A plow is stuck in the snow in downtown Buffalo, New York, December 25, 2022. This screen grab was taken from a social media video.

Twitter / @TROYATHY

Two people died Friday at their suburban home in Cheektowaga, New York. Because the paramedics weren’t there in time to treat their condition. Some people have had cardiac arrest while shoveling or removing snow, Polonkers said, warning people with heart disease to avoid shoveling snow. He urged people to stay off the roads and said damage from the storm is likely to continue to increase.

“Some were found in cars, some were found on the road in snowmen,” Polonkaerts said. “I know people who have been stuck in their cars for more than two days.”

A state of emergency continues throughout Erie County on Monday.

Freezing conditions and power outages forced Buffalo residents to rush everywhere in what Hochul calls the city’s longest lasting snowstorm condition yet. But with all-white roads, it wasn’t an option for people like Jeremy Manahan, who charged his cell phone in a parked car after nearly 29 hours of power outages.

“We have one warming shelter, but it’s too far to get there. We can’t drive because we’re stuck,” Manahan said. “And you can’t be outside for more than 10 minutes without getting frostbite.”

Winter Storm Hits Buffalo, New York
A man removes snow from a driveway in Amherst, New York, December 25, 2022, after a winter storm hit the Buffalo area.

Brendan McDermid / Reuters

Dijak Ilunga of Gaithersburg, Md., was en route to spending Christmas with his daughters on Friday to visit relatives in Hamilton, Ontario when his SUV got stuck in Buffalo. Instead, they left their engines running for hours, swaying in the wind and almost buried in the snow.

By 4am on Saturday, fuel was almost gone, so Ilunga made the desperate choice to risk a howling storm to reach a nearby shelter. He carried his 6-year-old Destiny on his back, while 16-year-old Cindy cradled a Pomeranian puppy and followed in his footsteps during the drift.

“If I stay in the car, I will die here with my children,” recalled Ilunga. He cried as his family walked through the shelter door. “It’s something I’ll never forget in my life.”

Bad weather for travelers continues, with hundreds of flights already canceled and more expected to follow. bomb cyclone — when atmospheric pressure dropped rapidly during a strong storm — occurred near the Great Lakes, stirring up blizzard conditions such as high winds and snow.

Another 2,700 US flights were canceled as of noon Monday, according to

The storm caused power outages in communities from Maine to Seattle. About 59,000 customers nationwide were without power as of 6 a.m. ET Monday, according to, down from 1.7 million at its peak. Most of the people still out of power were in Maine and New York.

Concerns about rolling blackouts across the eastern state subsided on Sunday after PJM Interconnection said its utility could meet the day’s peak power demand. Mid-Atlantic power grid operators called on 65 million consumers to save energy amid Saturday’s freeze.

Storm-related deaths have been reported across the country in recent days, including a 27-year-old man from Niagara County, New York, who was struck by carbon monoxide after snow blocked his furnace. I was beaten. In Ohio, he killed 10 people, including a utility worker who was electrocuted and several others who died in multiple car accidents. He killed six motorists in crashes in Missouri, Kansas and Kentucky. A Vermont woman struck by a fallen branch. An apparently homeless man found in freezing temperatures in Colorado. A woman fell into the ice of the Wisconsin River.

The cold snap has reached the south, and officials Jackson, Mississippi announced On Christmas Day, residents have to boil their drinking water because water pipes burst in frigid temperatures.

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