"Friday the 13" Buffalo, New York snow storm in pictures

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Sunday, October 15, 2006

Buffalo, New York — According to National Grid and NYSEG during an afternoon press conference, at least 300,000 people and businesses are still without power as the City of Buffalo, New York begins to clean up after the worst October lake effect snow storm in "137 years of records" being kept, according to the National Weather Service. The NOAA calls the weather event "unprecedented." Power in many areas may not be fixed until early next week. Electric crews from Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and Pennsylvania have been called in to assist in the clean-up efforts, but power to many areas may not be fully restored until next weekend.

Federal aid immediately available

The Federal Emergency Management Agency or FEMA has cleared the way for at least US$5 million to be given to Erie County and Western New York to be used for the efforts of cleaning up the city. Shelters will also be reimbursed for their services. Residents will also have a chance to be reimbursed for goods, food and water that they needed to purchase during the storm. Items such as bottled water, radios and flashlights could be among those items eligible for reimbursement, according to a press conference with city officials and National Grid this afternoon.

Hundreds of trees in Buffalo and the surrounding suburbs such as Amherst and Tonawanda are severely damaged and in many cases have to be cut down completely.

Erie County has been declared a natural disaster area and the Mayor of Buffalo, Byron Brown said in a press conference yesterday that the city and county will file several applications for federal aid and assistance with FEMA.

Flooding possible

A flood watch still remains in effect for much of the region, as melting snow pack is causing storm drains to over flow, and debris from trees is causing some drains to clog completely making many inaccessible to city workers.

Delaware Park, located near the Albright Knox Art Gallery, is nearly flooded as the banks of Hoyt Lake are beginning to over flow.

City workers are working to clear debris from a main storm drain near the overpass next to the intersection of Delaware and Forest Avenues.

Spoiled food

A local business, the Lexington Co-op on Elmwood Avenue in Buffalo had to throw out nearly every perishable good in the store after being without power for almost 2 days. During the late afternoon on October 14, the Co-op acquired a generator which is currently supplying the entire store with electricity, but power itself has not yet been restored.

These pictures are just some of the very widespread damage caused by the storm. Many were taken within less than 1 mile from Forest and Elmwood in Buffalo.

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