read the news // live the culture
The Upcoming | Read the news // Live the culture
Monday 24th November 2014
Menu
Current affairsNews

Flood warning raised as snow melts with rising temperatures in US

  Sunday 23rd November 2014
  Sunday 23rd November 2014

“Historic” levels of snowfall and rising temperatures in the north-east US have caused a serious flood risk, officials say.

Five to six feet of water is expected to flood parts of US as snow begins to melt. Photo: Aastha Gill

Hundreds of Americans have joined “shovel brigades” in order to reduce the risk of urban flooding as the snow melts. The city of Buffalo in New York is reported to have received as much snow in three days as it usually expects in a year, with some parts of the city experiencing more than 2.4m (8ft) of snow on the ground.

At least 13 people are believed to have died as a result of the excessive snowfall. As temperatures in the area rose to above freezing on Saturday, locals are more tensed about the flood drainage systems getting blocked with uncollected autumn leaves.

Flood warnings have been issued in New York, the counties of Erie, Genesee, Wyoming, Chautauqua and Cattaraugus.

Officials think the main concern is roof collapses caused by the weight of melted snow. More than 30 such incidents have already been reported and state governor Andrew Cuomo has emphasised the unpredictability of such conditions.

After touring the Buffalo area Cuomo said: “If the temperature goes up as quickly as they are forecasting, there is a potential for building collapses, significant flooding. We don’t have a crystal ball. We can’t say exactly whether there will be a flooding problem. We can’t say what kind of structure collapses we’re going to have. But we anticipate both to the same extent.”

Authorities are advising locals to put off any “non-essential” travel. Meanwhile, Buffalo is living up to its reputation as “the city of good neighbours”. Many groups of people have taken to the streets to help shift the melting snow away from residential and pedestrian areas.

61-year-old Buffalo resident Kevin Masterson praised other locals for their charity. Masterson said: “They’re like angels. I was out shovelling and all of a sudden I had all these people.”

Senator Charles Schumer has vowed to push for federal disaster assistance for the Buffalo area in the case of dangerous flooding.

Thomas Rhys Jones


More about the author


Share this story


  • Pin It
  • Share on Google+
  • Reddit
  • Stumble
  • LinkedIn

Latest related

Labour proposes to sell “non-essential” buildings to ease national deficit
Labour proposes to sell “non-essential” buildings to ease national deficit

Labour has proposed plans to sell four “non-essential buildings” in London in order to reduce the country’s [read more]

Researchers design gecko-inspired Spider-Man gloves to climb glass
Researchers design gecko-inspired Spider-Man gloves to climb glass

Researchers at Stanford University have developed gloves which allow humans to scale surfaces such as glass, plastic, [read more]

Ofsted publishes safeguarding reports of east London faith schools
Ofsted publishes safeguarding reports of east London faith schools

A report issued today by the Office for Standards in Education, Children’s Services and Skills (Ofsted) into seven [read more]

Oscar-winning movie director Mike Nichols dies at 83
Oscar-winning movie director Mike Nichols dies at 83

Mike Nichols, director of The Graduate, Working Girl and Catch-22, and winner of the 1968 best director Oscar, has [read more]

Archives