Buffalo set for more snow after ‘years’ of blizzard

Buffalo, N.Y. (AP) — The storm-battered city of Buffalo braced for fresh snow Tuesday while still trying to recover from an epic snowstorm that killed at least 28 people , others were trapped in their cars for days and the city’s airport was closed.

The National Weather Service predicted that snowfall could reach as much as 2 inches (2.5 to 5 centimeters) Tuesday in Erie County, which includes New York’s second-largest city, Buffalo, with about 275,000 residents.

Chief forecaster Bob Oravec said that while this is nothing like the major storms that have dropped more than 4 feet of snow in some places since Christmas Eve, “any additional snow that may continue to fall in Buffalo today will have an impact.”

“The biggest impact will be how it hinders the removal of previous snowfall,” he said.

The rest of the U.S. was also affected by the ferocious winter storm, killing at least 20 people and leaving communities from Maine to Washington state without power in other parts of the country.

In Buffalo, the dead were found in cars, houses and snowdrifts. Some died while shoveling snow, others died when emergency crews were unable to respond to the medical crisis in time. County Executive Mark Polonkaz called the blizzard “probably the worst storm of our lifetimes,” even for an area known for its heavy snowfall.

Trisha LoGrasso and her family were still huddled together in a makeshift cabin in their Buffalo living room on Monday, around a small heater. She has no heat due to a gas leak, the temperature in her home was 42 degrees (5.5 degrees Celsius), and a burst pipe left her without running water.

“I’ve lived here my whole life and this is the worst storm I’ve ever seen,” the 48-year-old said.

President Joe Biden delivered federal aid to hard-hit New York on Monday, while Gov. Kathy Hochul toured the aftermath in her hometown of Buffalo and called the snowstorm “an epic Difficult to meet”. Nearly every fire truck in the city was stranded Saturday, she said.

Hochul, a Democrat, noted that the storm comes more than a month after the region was inundated with another “historic” snowfall. Between the storms, snowfall totals were not far off the 95.4 inches (242 centimeters) the region typically sees throughout the winter.

Snow totals at Buffalo Niagara International Airport were 49.2 inches (1.25 meters) at 10 a.m. Monday, the National Weather Service said. The airport will remain closed until Wednesday morning, officials said.

Some 2,872 domestic and international flights in the U.S. were canceled as of about 8 a.m. ET Tuesday, according to tracking site FlightAware.

The U.S. Department of Transportation said it would investigate Southwest Airlines flight cancellations that left travelers stranded at airports across the country during the winter storm. Many airlines have been forced to cancel flights, but Southwest is leading the charge so far.

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