The city of Buffalo is no stranger to wild winter weather, that’s for sure, with the Western New York locale dealing with any number of strong storms from year to year.
In 2022, however, Buffalonians were left dealing with something far less exciting than prolonged snow days and wild social media fodder, as Winter Storm Elliott brought with it deadly consequences and horrifying scenes.
Twelve people have died after a freezing blizzard with high winds struck the Buffalo, New York, area in a storm that the state’s governor has described as “devastating.”Advertisement - story continues below
The people who died were found outside, one was in a car and one was inside, and others died from cardiac events related to clearing snow or after delayed emergency responses, Erie County Executive Mark Poloncarz said.
Gov. Kathy Hochul said after she surveyed the damage: “It is devastating. It is going to a war zone. The vehicles along the sides of the roads are shocking.”
The deceased were from all walks of life.
Six of the dead were in Buffalo, the city said. The others were in Amherst and Cheektowaga, Poloncarz said. Their ages were 26 to 93. Reports from the field indicate the number of dead will rise, he said.
The weather was so severe that Erie County was under a driving ban for civilians, with only emergency vehicles and first responders being allowed to brave the treacherous roadways.