Potentially dangerous storm moves into Buffalo, western NY

Nov 16, 2022, 6:07 PM | Updated: Nov 17, 2022, 6:42 pm
Shoppers make their way through blowing snow and cold temperatures, Thursday, Nov. 17, 2022, in dow...

Shoppers make their way through blowing snow and cold temperatures, Thursday, Nov. 17, 2022, in downtown St. Joseph, Mich. (Don Campbell/The Herald-Palladium via AP)

(Don Campbell/The Herald-Palladium via AP)

              Gov. Kathy Hochul speaks during a briefing on preparations for the impending snowstorm that is expected to dump several feet of snow on the Western New York area beginning tonight at the New York State Thruway's Walden Garage in Cheektowaga, N.Y. on Thursday, Nov. 17, 2022. (Derek Gee/The Buffalo News via AP)
            
              Gov. Kathy Hochul speaks during a briefing on preparations for the impending snowstorm that is expected to dump several feet of snow on the Western New York area beginning tonight at the New York State Thruway's Walden Garage in Cheektowaga, N.Y. on Thursday, Nov. 17, 2022. (Derek Gee/Buffalo News via AP)/The Buffalo News via AP)
            
              Gov. Kathy Hochul thanks workers for the New York State Thruway following a press briefing on the impending snowstorm that is expected to dump several feet of snow on the Western New York region at the Thruway's Walden Garage in Cheektowaga, N.Y. on Thursday, Nov. 17, 2022. (Derek Gee/The Buffalo News via AP)
            
              Heavy equipment operator Don Beitz walks around a giant snow thrower while preparing for the impending snowstorm that is expected to dump several feet of snow on the area from 7 p.m. tonight until 7 p.m. Friday at the New York State Thruway's Walden Garage in Cheektowaga, N.Y. on Thursday, Nov. 17, 2022. (Derek Gee/The Buffalo News via AP)
            
              Shoppers make their way through blowing snow and cold temperatures, Thursday, Nov. 17, 2022, in downtown St. Joseph, Mich. (Don Campbell/The Herald-Palladium via AP)
            
              Gov. Kathy Hochul speaks during a briefing on preparations for the impending snowstorm that is expected to dump several feet of snow on the Western New York area beginning tonight at the New York State Thruway's Walden Garage in Cheektowaga, N.Y. on Thursday, Nov. 17, 2022. (Derek Gee/The Buffalo News via AP)
            
              Gov. Kathy Hochul speaks during a briefing on preparations for the impending snowstorm that is expected to dump several feet of snow on the Western New York area beginning tonight at the New York State Thruway's Walden Garage in Cheektowaga, N.Y. on Thursday, Nov. 17, 2022. (Derek Gee/Buffalo News via AP)/The Buffalo News via AP)
            
              Gov. Kathy Hochul thanks workers for the New York State Thruway following a press briefing on the impending snowstorm that is expected to dump several feet of snow on the Western New York region at the Thruway's Walden Garage in Cheektowaga, N.Y. on Thursday, Nov. 17, 2022. (Derek Gee/The Buffalo News via AP)
            
              Heavy equipment operator Don Beitz walks around a giant snow thrower while preparing for the impending snowstorm that is expected to dump several feet of snow on the area from 7 p.m. tonight until 7 p.m. Friday at the New York State Thruway's Walden Garage in Cheektowaga, N.Y. on Thursday, Nov. 17, 2022. (Derek Gee/The Buffalo News via AP)
            
              Shoppers make their way through blowing snow and cold temperatures, Thursday, Nov. 17, 2022, in downtown St. Joseph, Mich. (Don Campbell/The Herald-Palladium via AP)
            
              Gov. Kathy Hochul speaks during a briefing on preparations for the impending snowstorm that is expected to dump several feet of snow on the Western New York area beginning tonight at the New York State Thruway's Walden Garage in Cheektowaga, N.Y. on Thursday, Nov. 17, 2022. (Derek Gee/The Buffalo News via AP)
            
              Gov. Kathy Hochul speaks during a briefing on preparations for the impending snowstorm that is expected to dump several feet of snow on the Western New York area beginning tonight at the New York State Thruway's Walden Garage in Cheektowaga, N.Y. on Thursday, Nov. 17, 2022. (Derek Gee/Buffalo News via AP)/The Buffalo News via AP)
            
              Gov. Kathy Hochul thanks workers for the New York State Thruway following a press briefing on the impending snowstorm that is expected to dump several feet of snow on the Western New York region at the Thruway's Walden Garage in Cheektowaga, N.Y. on Thursday, Nov. 17, 2022. (Derek Gee/The Buffalo News via AP)
            
              Heavy equipment operator Don Beitz walks around a giant snow thrower while preparing for the impending snowstorm that is expected to dump several feet of snow on the area from 7 p.m. tonight until 7 p.m. Friday at the New York State Thruway's Walden Garage in Cheektowaga, N.Y. on Thursday, Nov. 17, 2022. (Derek Gee/The Buffalo News via AP)
            
              Gov. Kathy Hochul speaks during a briefing on preparations for the impending snowstorm that is expected to dump several feet of snow on the Western New York area beginning tonight at the New York State Thruway's Walden Garage in Cheektowaga, N.Y. on Thursday, Nov. 17, 2022. (Derek Gee/The Buffalo News via AP)
            
              Gov. Kathy Hochul speaks during a briefing on preparations for the impending snowstorm that is expected to dump several feet of snow on the Western New York area beginning tonight at the New York State Thruway's Walden Garage in Cheektowaga, N.Y. on Thursday, Nov. 17, 2022. (Derek Gee/Buffalo News via AP)/The Buffalo News via AP)
            
              Gov. Kathy Hochul thanks workers for the New York State Thruway following a press briefing on the impending snowstorm that is expected to dump several feet of snow on the Western New York region at the Thruway's Walden Garage in Cheektowaga, N.Y. on Thursday, Nov. 17, 2022. (Derek Gee/The Buffalo News via AP)
            
              Heavy equipment operator Don Beitz walks around a giant snow thrower while preparing for the impending snowstorm that is expected to dump several feet of snow on the area from 7 p.m. tonight until 7 p.m. Friday at the New York State Thruway's Walden Garage in Cheektowaga, N.Y. on Thursday, Nov. 17, 2022. (Derek Gee/The Buffalo News via AP)
            
              Gov. Kathy Hochul speaks during a briefing on preparations for the impending snowstorm that is expected to dump several feet of snow on the Western New York area beginning tonight at the New York State Thruway's Walden Garage in Cheektowaga, N.Y. on Thursday, Nov. 17, 2022. (Derek Gee/The Buffalo News via AP)
            
              Gov. Kathy Hochul speaks during a briefing on preparations for the impending snowstorm that is expected to dump several feet of snow on the Western New York area beginning tonight at the New York State Thruway's Walden Garage in Cheektowaga, N.Y. on Thursday, Nov. 17, 2022. (Derek Gee/Buffalo News via AP)/The Buffalo News via AP)
            
              Gov. Kathy Hochul thanks workers for the New York State Thruway following a press briefing on the impending snowstorm that is expected to dump several feet of snow on the Western New York region at the Thruway's Walden Garage in Cheektowaga, N.Y. on Thursday, Nov. 17, 2022. (Derek Gee/The Buffalo News via AP)
            
              Heavy equipment operator Don Beitz walks around a giant snow thrower while preparing for the impending snowstorm that is expected to dump several feet of snow on the area from 7 p.m. tonight until 7 p.m. Friday at the New York State Thruway's Walden Garage in Cheektowaga, N.Y. on Thursday, Nov. 17, 2022. (Derek Gee/The Buffalo News via AP)
            
              A late fall snowstorm blankets the campus of Andrews University as students head to class Wednesday, Nov. 16, 2022, in Berrien Springs, Mich.(Don Campbell/The Herald-Palladium via AP)
            
              A late fall snowstorm blankets the campus of Andrews University as students head to class Wednesday, Nov. 16, 2022, in Berrien Springs, Mich.(Don Campbell/The Herald-Palladium via AP)

BUFFALO, N.Y. (AP) — New York Gov. Kathy Hochul declared a state of emergency Thursday for parts of western New York ahead of a dangerous storm that had the potential to dump several feet of snow on some communities on the eastern ends of Lake Erie and Lake Ontario.

The worst snowfall was expected in Buffalo, where the National Weather Service said up to 4 feet (1.2 meters) might fall in some spots through Sunday, with periods of near-zero visibility. Other areas could get a foot (0.3 meters) or less of the lake-effect snow, which is caused by frigid air picking up copious amounts of moisture from the warmer lakes.

Hochul’s state of emergency covers 11 counties, with commercial truck traffic banned from a stretch of Interstate 90 after 4 p.m. Thursday.

Erie County Executive Mark Poloncarz issued a driving ban beginning at 9 p.m. Thursday, shortly after heavy snow punctuated by thunder and lightning moved into Buffalo, quickly covering the ground and roads. The most intense snowfall was expected to last through Friday evening, with more falling on Saturday into Sunday.

Administrators canceled Friday classes for students in Buffalo and throughout the county. Amtrak stations in Buffalo, Niagara Falls and Depew closed Thursday and will stay closed Friday, The Buffalo News reported, while numerous flights in and out of Buffalo Niagara International Airport were canceled.

“I want western New Yorkers to take this seriously,” Hochul said.

Also ahead of the storm, the NFL announced it would relocate the Buffalo Bills’ home game against the Cleveland Browns to Detroit on Sunday.

The switch in sites means the Bills will play back-to-back games in Detroit, as they are scheduled to play the Lions on Thanksgiving.

The weather service also warned of accumulations of 2 feet (0.6 meters) or more of snow in northern New York on the eastern edge of Lake Ontario, and in parts of northern Michigan through Sunday.

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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Potentially dangerous storm moves into Buffalo, western NY