WXXI AM News

Bitterly cold temperatures and lake effect snows make for tough travel

Dec 13, 2017

Credit Spectrum News

A challenging commute, and in general not a great day to be outside. That’s the gist of the forecast for Wednesday throughout Western NY and the Finger Lakes.

Several inches of snow fell in some areas overnight from Tuesday into Wednesday morning, with higher amounts near the Lake Ontario shoreline, and that scenario is expected to continue during the day on Wednesday.

The National Weather Service canceled a winter storm warning for Monroe County. But the warning is still in effect for Wayne County until 7pm Wednesday.

News 8 Meteorologist Josh Nichols says expect shifting bands of lake effect snow on Wednesday with blowing and drifting. Another 1 – 4 inches of snow is expected in the immediate Rochester area, with 4 – 8 inches along the Route 104 corridor and in the most persistent bands.

The high temperature on Wednesday will only be around 19 degrees, and strong winds will make it feel closer to zero.

The forecast calls for less wind Wednesday night with some light snow possible in places, and on Thursday it will still be cold, with a high near 20, but just a little light snow.

Temperatures should get into the 30s by Sunday.

Check on school or business closings HERE.

Area highway crews have been working around the clock to try and keep the major highways clear.

In Wayne County, which often gets a lot of lake effect snow,  Highway Superintendent Kevin Rooney says things were going pretty well as of early Wednesday morning.

“The towns are all out, they plow for us on our county roads; the state is out, roads are just a little bit snow covered and some blowing snow, but not a lot of accumulation out here."

In the Town of Webster, highway officials say the biggest challenge is the strong winds, causing some visibility problems for drivers. They also say there’s not a lot of actual snow accumulation, but the very cold temperatures make it difficult for the salt to help with road conditions, so drivers need to adjust their speeds accordingly.

The City of Rochester is asking residents and motorists to prepare for the snow, and had these advisories:

• Monitor PlowTrax, the City’s snow plow tracker application, to check plowing progress in real time. For more visit: www.cityofrochester.gov/plowtrax/.
• Strictly observe alternate side parking regulations to allow plows clear passage. One illegally parked vehicle can impede plowing for an entire street.
• In the event that a Parking Emergency is declared, on-street parking will be prohibited on designated Parking Emergency Streets. For more, visit www.cityofrochester.gov/parkingemergencystreets/.
• Monitor the news for travel advisories, closures, cancellations and refuse delays. Visit www.cityofrochester.gov/rocsnow/ to watch for updates from the City.
• Factor conditions into travel time and drive carefully.
• The City plows sidewalks when 4 inches of new snow has accumulated. Property owners are responsible to remove any remaining snow and ice.
• Do not put refuse or recycling containers on top of snow banks, in the street or sidewalk. Place them at the edge of a driveway or on a shoveled path.
• Keep fire hydrants clear.
• Bring pets inside.
• Shoveling or plowing snow from private property onto sidewalks, roads or fire hydrants is illegal.