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Whipping Winds

Weather Makes For Slick Traveling; Closes Schools

Slight injuries were reported when a car and a tractor-trailer collided on Route 60 near Cassadaga. The air bags in the vehicle deployed and a woman in the car said she had a shoulder injury. The weather related mishap occurred on Route 60 at Luce Road in Cassadaga. P-J photo by Jordan W. Patterson

Most schools in the county were closed Monday as a powerful wind storm continued to down trees and power lines throughout Chautauqua County, particularly during the morning hours.

Overnight reports indicate a tree down on power lines around 7:15 a.m. in Frewsburg, a tree down on wires in Gerry around 3:36 a.m., power lines down across the road on Route 380 in Sinclairville between Towerville and Kimballstand at 1:42 a.m.; a tree down with powerlines around 11 p.m. in Forestville, a tree down in the road in Westfield around 11 p.m., lines down in Portland at 10:36 p.m., a power line and pole on fire at 9:54 p.m. in Clymer, power lines down in Cherry Creek at 8:52 p.m., another tree down in Sinclairville at 6:47 p.m.and a tree and power lines down in Westfield at 6:27 p.m.

There were 828 Chautauqua County customers of National Grid without power as of 8:15 a.m. Monday, largely in the Stockton-Cassadaga area. There were also smaller outages in Arkwright, French Creek, Lakewood and Ellicott, each affecting fewer than five people.

Electric customers in the vicinity of Jamestown Business College (JBC) were without power Monday while BPU linemen clear an electric line of a large tree limb. Workers are attempting to correct the problem in a short amount of time but do not give an anticipated repair time. JBC, the Westgate Plaza and other customers in the vicinity were affected.

Jamestown BPU electric customers in Celoron, West Ellicott, Peck-Settlement Road, Buffalo Street Extension and Willard Street Extension lower power Sunday, but it was restored early Sunday night after a pole and transformer on Seventh Street in Celoron was knocked down by a falling tree.

Mounds of ice collect along the Lake Erie shore at Hoover Beach, in Hamburg, N.Y., Monday, Feb. 25, 2019. High winds howled through much of the nation's eastern half for a second day Monday, cutting power to hundreds of thousands of homes and businesses, closing schools, and pushing dramatic mountains of ice onto the shores of Lake Erie. AP photo

BPU Electric Division personnel were called out shortly before 2 p.m. Sunday for scattered outages caused by high winds that brought down at least one tree, one pole and power lines.

More than 65,000 power outages have been reported in upstate New York after high winds continued to rattle the region overnight.

High winds raised water levels and sent giant ice chunks spilling over the banks of the Niagara River across from Buffalo, New York, creating a jagged barrier between the river and a scenic road.

Footage captured by Canadian parks police shows massive chunks tumbling over each other to create the wall in Fort Erie, Ontario on Sunday.

Ice mounds 25 to 30 feet high also came ashore farther south, piling up on several lakefront properties in suburban Hamburg.

“It’s awesome! Crazy and awesome at the same time,” said Rose Hirshbeck of Hamburg as she braced against bitter, buffeting winds to snap photos of the mounds which stretched along the shoreline as far as the eye could see. “This is unbelievable.”

More than 65,000 power outages were reported around upstate New York Monday morning as high winds rattled the region for a second day.

Hundreds of schools had cancellations or delays.

“I have my daughter with me. We’re off from school so came down to check out the ice,” said Chris Karys of Blasdell, who pulled over along the Lake Erie shoreline in Hamburg. He picked up a basketball-sized chunk of ice and posed for a photo in front of the towering piles.

“I’ve seen some of the ice before,” said Karys, who went to high school nearby, “but nothing as high as this.”

High winds had raised the water levels on the eastern end of Lake Erie in a phenomenon known as a seiche, according to the New York Power Authority. The ice was then pushed over a boom upstream from the river.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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