At least 25 people have died in this weekend’s devastating blizzard, officials said Monday, making it the worst blizzard in western New York in at least 50 years.
Erie County Commissioner Mark C. Polonkers said at a news conference Monday morning that roads remain impassable and more than 12,000 people still do not have power. Rescue teams struggle to free people trapped in cars, while those trapped in shelters and nursing homes are running out of food.
“This is probably the worst storm in our lifetime, possibly in the city’s history,” Polonkaerts said. “And this is far from over.”
The dead were found in cars, in houses and in snowmen. Some suffered cardiac arrest while shoveling snow. It’s an all too common result of cold weather, which can cause arteries and veins to constrict and blood pressure to spike.
Poloncarz expects the death toll to continue to climb as first responders eventually reach victims who may have been dead for days.
Buffalo was at the center of a powerful Arctic explosion that wreaked havoc from Washington to Florida, imposing some form of winter weather warning or advisory on more than half of the country. At least 11 people have died outside of New York. According to PowerOutage.us, he also blacked out more than 100,000 people in Washington, Maine, Texas and Virginia on Monday.
The National Weather Service warned that an “enhancement shot” of cool air from Canada could bring more snow to the Great Plains and Midwest on Monday, but deep freeze will persist in the eastern half of the country. .