Intro. to Emergency Management
The City of Buffalo and surrounding areas in Upstate New York have adapted to the yearly snowfall that impacts travel, communication, and overall ways of life. It is not uncommon for these areas to have interrupted business days due to snow and other inclement weather activities a few times a year. Occasionally, this geographic area of the United States gets hit with major snow and ice storms that literally cripple citizen’s ways of life. The 2006 October Storm, also referred to as “The October Surprise Storm” is one that will be remembered by many Buffaloinians, just like the Blizzard of ’77. Stretching resources and man-power of the local emergency management systems to its max, this storm tested the ability of emergency official’s response and recovery abilities along with their preparedness and mitigation strategies.
The time of year, October, that this storm took place resulted in devastating physical effects to landscapes, roads, buildings, and other property. The fall season had just begun with almost all trees with their leaves still attached. Heavy, wet lake-effect snow weighed down tree limbs which eventually cracked under the extreme weight of the snow, knocking out power and restricting access around the city of Buffalo and surrounding areas. “Hundreds of trees have snapped in half as the snow began to fall around the city. Many trees, which still have their leaves, have broken into pieces as the heavy, wet snow began to pile up, as much as an inch an hour.”(2). The storm's effects were highly localized: it dumped up to two feet of snow on some areas of the Buffalo metro region, while other areas saw very little snow, or no snow at all.(1). The hardest hit areas included the Towns of Tonawanda, Amherst, Cheektowaga, and the City of Buffalo. Although The 2006 October Storm officially started at about noon on Thursday October 12, 2006, the first notable ground... [continues]
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