NEW YORK (WWTI) — Governor Hochul spoke on Sunday urging New Yorkers to prepare for winter weather expected to bring heavy snow in some areas and a mix of ice and rain in other locations starting Sunday evening and continuing through Monday afternoon. 

Snowfall rates could reach up to three inches per hour at times with total snow accumulations of 18 inches or more in the North Country, Western New York, and Finger Lakes. Other regions will see either heavy snow or a mix of snow, ice and rain.

Winds gusting as high as 45 mph are expected to produce blowing and drifting snow throughout the weather event, causing difficult travel conditions and the potential for power outages. Due to inclement weather, all state COVID-19 testing and vaccination sites in the North Country and all counties north of Rockland County will be closed. Individuals with appointments will receive notice of cancellations and information on how to reschedule.

“New York is poised to experience one of the largest storms so far this winter and our crews are out in full force preparing our roadways and staging critical assets,” Governor Hochul said. “With freezing temperatures persisting and heavy snowfall forecasted, I’m urging all New York’s to pay close attention to their local forecasts and avoid unnecessary travel throughout the duration of the storm.”

Snow is expected to begin falling Sunday evening, moving south to north across the state with the heaviest snowfall taking place overnight into the early morning hours. From late Sunday to early Monday, some areas could see a wintry mix of snow, ice and rain, and then a change back to snow by Monday morning. Total snow accumulations range from 6-20 inches and ice accumulation up to a tenth of an inch is possible in upstate regions. 

State Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services Acting Commissioner Jackie Bray is urging New Yorkers to pay close attention to local forecasts over the next 24 hours, along with being prepared for hazardous travel conditions on Monday.

Winter weather warnings and advisories are currently in effect across the state through Monday night for multiple counties in the Western NY, Finger Lakes, Central NY, Southern Tier, North Country, Mohawk Valley, Capital District, and Mid-Hudson regions. Coastal Flood Warnings are in effect for New York City, Long Island, and southern Westchester County through Monday.

The New York State Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services’ Emergency Operations Center is activated and will closely monitor conditions. State stockpiles are prepared to deploy assets to localities to support any storm-related needs, including pumps, chainsaws, sandbags, generators, cots, blankets, and bottled water.

According to Governor Hochul’s office, all available snow and ice equipment is ready to deploy. Statewide equipment numbers are as follows:

  • 1602 large plow trucks
  • 150 medium duty plows
  • 51 tow plows
  • 323 large loaders
  • 39 snow blowers

All Thruway Authority Maintenance Sections will be staffed 24/7 for the duration of the storm and select Regional Operation Centers will be staffed to monitor road conditions and redeploy assets as needed. The Thruway has 681 operators and supervisors ready to respond with 248 large snow plows, 116 medium snow plows, 10 tow plows and 66 loaders across the state with more than 118,000 tons of road salt on hand.

Variable Message Signs and social media are utilized to alert motorists of winter weather conditions on the Thruway. 

New York’s utilities have approximately 7,000 workers available to engage in damage assessment, response, and restoration efforts across New York State. Agency staff will track utilities’ work throughout the event and ensure utilities shift appropriate staffing to regions anticipated to be most impacted.  

State Police are prepared to deploy additional Troopers as needed to affected areas. All State Police four-wheel drive and specialized vehicles, including snowmobiles and utility terrain vehicles, are staged and ready for immediate response, and all emergency power and communications equipment has been tested.  

The New York Power Authority and the Canal Corporation staff are performing preparations to ensure all facilities, assets and equipment are secured and ready. The Power Authority is prepared to support power restoration activities if needed.