While Western New Yorkers will look forward to relief from Arctic cold temperatures beginning this weekend, meteorologists and government officials are looking ahead with concern for potential flood problems.
David Zaff of the National Weather Service says eyes will be on the usual trouble spots: Cazenovia, Tonawanda and Ellicott Creeks, and the Buffalo River, when the weather turns warmer.
“Mainly right now we’re focused on ice jams in the typical locations,” Zaff said.
“We are expecting a pretty good warmup starting on Saturday with highs getting in to the twenties and in to the thirties, into the forties on Sunday, maybe even hitting the fifty degree mark by Monday, possibly Tuesday. Along with that, we’ll have some rain at times. Nothing too significant. The heaviest will be Monday night with about a quarter to a half-inch of rain.”
Governor Cuomo, during a Thursday morning appearance in Buffalo to discuss blizzard related issues, encouraged local leaders to proactively contact the State Department of Environmental Conservation for assistance with anticipated debris clearing in waterways expected to experience flooding.
“Normally you have to go to the state DEC to get approval to clear a stream,” Cuomo said. “If you have that issue now and you know it, contact DEC now so we can get those approvals done. We’ll do them very quickly. If you need equipment to clear debris out of a stream, let’s do it now before that flooding starts and before we have a problem.”
Forecasters have not issued any notices at this time but are monitoring developments.