Updated 02/01/2013 02:04 PM
Winter weather returns
Lake effect snow battered parts of the Southern Tier Thursday. YNN's Katie Cummings has more on how the weather affected drivers, businesses, and local municipalities.
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"The roads would be fine and the next thing you know, you can’t see the car in front of you. It’s just remarkable," said Silver Creek resident Pat O'Brien.
Many drivers in the Southern Tier like Pat O’Brien dealt with whiteout and slick road conditions along the Thruway on Thursday. Down by Ripley, the exit was closed part of the afternoon. Over in Sherman, snow accumulated fast blanketing the roadway.
O’Brien says it’s a stark contrast from Wednesday with highs above 60.
"It is a little bit of a rollercoaster with record highs followed by wind chills around zero the very next day and zero visibility. It does catch you by surprise," said O'Brien.
O’Brien is a frequent patron at Tom’s Restaurant right on Allegany Road in Silver Creek. Business was so slow there that they decided to close early.
"This dining room area would usually be pretty full around now and today there's nobody," said cook Robert Lawrie.
The National Weather Service clocked wind gusts at 59 mph at the Buffalo Niagara International Airport.
County legislator George Borrello flew in Thursday from Cancun and says the winds made it a bumpy trip back.
"The plane was really rocking and dipping as we were coming in for a landing and there were big gusts even well over 40 miles an hour and when that happens they have to keep the throttle up, keep the speed up so we literally landed really fast," Borello said.
While on vacation, Borrello says he was in contact with county officials over a possible ice jam at the Cattaraugus Creek. The drastic change in temperature usually causes concern for Sunset Bay residents along the creek.
"Unfortunately, it's not going to take much for us to get a flood so when situations like this happen with, you know, a big rise in temperature and drops and so forth. We really got to keep a watchful eye on flooding in Cattaraugus Creek," said Borrello.
Borrello says right now the possibility of flooding seems small.
Even as the snow continues into Friday, Tom’s Restaurant will be back in business.
"Keep the driveway shoveled and keep it plowed. We’ll be open and serving food," said Lawrie.