BUFFALO WARZONE: Nat’l Guard Called for Solemn Duty After Storm

As the last few remnants of Winter Storm Elliott continue to fade off to the east, the city of Buffalo, New York is beginning to come back to life.

The Queen City has long played host to dramatic, devastating winter storms, enhanced and invigorated by their lake effect situation.  But this storm was remarkable, even by Buffalo standards, and the fallout has now required the National Guard to go door to door, checking for living beings.

The National Guard went door to door in parts of Buffalo on Wednesday to check on people who had lost power during the area’s deadliest winter storm in decades, and authorities faced the tragic possibility of finding more victims amid melting snow.

As a deep freeze eased into milder weather, the National Guard members were knocking on doors in those neighborhoods in Buffalo and its suburbs, said Mark Poloncarz, the top official in the county that encompasses New York’s second-most-populous city.

“We are fearful that there are individuals who may have perished, living alone, or people who are not doing well,” he said.

There has already been a great deal of tragedy to be seen.

Officials said more than 30 people so far have been reported to have died because of the blizzard that raged Friday and Saturday in western New York, an area prone to powerful winter storms. The historic Blizzard of 1977 killed as many as 29.

Buffalo will thaw this week, however, with temperatures expected to rise into the 40’s and 50’s in a matter of days.