With blizzard over, cold temps become focus

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) – With the blizzard officially over, the focus for emergency response officials has shifted to the bitter cold temperatures.

A Code Blue is in effect overnight, and warming shelters will remain open until 8 o’clock Thursday morning. Wind chills could dip to -15 to -20 overnight.

Buffalo and Erie County officials credit the public for obeying travel advisories and staying off the roads during Wednesday’s blizzard. They say that cooperation was a tremendous help to plow drivers and first responders. And they’re asking for people to be smart again on Thursday.

With high temperatures only expected to reach the teens, they say it’s important to layer up, take precautions – and make sure your children do, too.

Erie County Health Commissioner Dr. Gale Burstein said, “It’s going to be very, very cold. Make sure that they’re dressed warmly in the morning. Many kids go out before the sun rises, to school. So just watch that your kids are dressed appropriately. No hoodies. They have to wear a real jacket and real shoes, boots.”

Erie County Public Works Chief Engineer Charles Sickler said, “The roads may look safe, but as that temperature goes down – we’re talking single digits here – the effectiveness of the salt reduces. We could have icy conditions, so we still need to exhibit caution on the roads. And with the public’s cooperation, we will keep those roads as safe as we can.”

Schools and government offices are scheduled to reopen on Thursday, as normal.

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