An expectant mother was forced to give birth in a firehouse after being unable to reach hospital due to nearly six feet of snow falling in just 36 hours in New York.
The Buffalo area has been battered by storms in recent days, which has left some motorists, including the rock band Interpol, trapped on western New York highways, with the National Guard bracing itself for another three feet of snow.
The one-week totals for the Buffalo area at close to the average snowfall for a year: 93.6 inches, or nearly to 8 feet.
New York Governor Andrew Cuomo has called up the National Guard to help rescue up to 100 stranded drivers who spent more than a day and a half stranded on highways after six feet of snow overwhelmed western New York this week.
Authorities are bracing for up to three more feet that could fall on western New York before the storm subsides this weekend.
A 132-mile stretch of the New York State Thruway remains closed today and dozens of drivers were trapped on the road after their vehicles became overwhelmed by the snow. Other motors abandoned their vehicles or were rescued by state troopers.
Currently, 22 stranded motorists are camping out at the Lackawanna toll station on the Thruway, waiting for vehicles to get through so that they can return home, the Buffalo News reports. Their cars are still parked on the highway – and in the way of snow plows that are attempting to clear the road.
Endjie Ulysses, a student at Penn State University, told NBC News she was one of 14 people trapped on a Greyhound bus on the Throughway for 34 hours before state troopers rescued them on Wednesday.
The snow is so heavy that it has to be loaded into trucks and carried away in many places because there’s no room to plow it on the roadsides
The early winter storms and bitter temperatures have already been blamed for at least eight deaths across three states – including a man in Buffalo, New York, who was found dead in his car, covered in several feet of snow after he crashed into a ditch.
The rest of the country was forced to bundle up again today as temperatures continue to clock in at 15 to 20 degrees below average for this time of year.
It was even colder today in many parts of the country than it was on terrible Tuesday. This means lows of 20 degrees in New York, Philadelphia and Washington, D.C. and single digits across most of the Midwest – including nine degrees in Chicago.
Even the South is experiencing a record-breaking deep-freeze, with temperatures dropping to 31 in Houston, 30 in New Orleans, 28 degrees in the Florida panhandle and 21 in Atlanta.
The bitter cold snap will continue for the rest of the week, with lows in the teens in the Midwest, 20s in the Northeast and mid-30s in the South for Thursday and Friday.