Canandaigua and Ontario County largely have escaped the heavy snow seen elsewhere — but the bitter cold continues
Except for the brutal cold and high winds, Ontario County escaped the brunt of the storm.
Canandaigua City Manager John Goodwin said for the most part, efforts were made to have city staff work indoors in order to be safe and warm. For some — like garbage collection workers — that was not possible.
“They’re doing a great job,” Goodwin said.
Wayne County wasn’t so lucky.
A travel advisory went into effect at 4 p.m. Friday and was to be elevated to a “no unnecessary travel” warning Friday night, according to Sheriff Barry Virts.
The declarations came about from the National Weather Service’s lake effect snow warning, which was to expire Saturday morning.
Significant amounts of snow were forecast to fall throughout parts of Wayne County overnight. Because plow crews may not have been on the road overnight, road surfaces may have seen significant accumulations before plowing is resumed Saturday morning, Virts said.
Neither declaration restricts travel, but they are meant to serve as warnings for motorists that high winds may make visibility difficult at times and because of lake effect snow, driving conditions can change rapidly.
“For the safety of all residents, the general public is encouraged to consider the need to be on the roads during these times and to use extreme caution while traveling in or around Wayne County,” Virts said.
A wind chill warning for much of western New York, including Wayne, Ontario and Livingston counties, is in effect until 7 a.m. Sunday, according to the National Weather Service. The NWS said the dangerously cold wind chills — expected to range from 15-below zero to 30-below — will cause frostbite to exposed skin in as little as 10 minutes. If you must be outside, cover all exposed skin, the NWS cautioned.
In the greater Canandaigua area, the deep freeze is projected to continue Saturday, with a high near 2 degrees Fahrenheit, wind chill values as low as minus-25, and a chance of snow showers with new accumulation of less than half an inch possible, according to the NWS. Gusts as high as 31 mph are possible Saturday.
Sunday sees a bit of an improvement, with a high near 21 — then on Monday, the mercury may inch above the freezing point, though not too far: A high of 35 is projected. The rest of the week looks much the same, with high in the low to mid 30s.
The bulk of local school districts closed for Friday, canceling classes and evening activities. The plan of action for Saturday, however, is mixed. The Canandaigua City School District, for instance, posted on its website that school buildings would be open Saturday for scheduled extracurricular activities such as sports, music, art and training programs. The Phelps-Clifton Springs, Manchester-Shortsville, Bloomfield and Naples districts, on the other hand, each posted that their Saturday activities are canceled. That includes the scheduled Billy Martin Circus at Naples, the district website noted, though adding that district staff would work with the circus in the hopes of rescheduling for later in the school year.
Other area districts did not post specific plans for Saturday activities, though a wrestling tournament that was to take place at Victor Senior High School has been canceled, according to the district's Facebook page.
The Wayne-Finger Lakes BOCES adult and continuing education programs were also canceled for Saturday, and Monroe Community College is closed through Sunday.
Elsewhere around New York state:
• The issue of student hunger complicated the decision to close Rochester schools because of the weather. The school district has a high poverty rate. For many kids, the only hot meal they get is at school. To accommodate those students and their families, six recreation centers were serving breakfast and lunch on Friday. They were also being used as warming sites. The district worked on those plans before announcing its snow day.
• The city of Rochester stepped in and made arrangements to connect tenants of a Dewey Avenue apartment building — which tenants say has been without heat since Dec. 28 — with emergency housing and the Red Cross. The building is owned by Rochester Asset Management, which owns more than 100 units across Rochester — including another Dewey Avenue building without heat, whose tenants have evacuated. City officials have posted a "NOT TO BE OCCUPIED" sign on the door of the building.
• A massive passenger plane had to land at a small airport in New Windsor, Orange County, because of runway closures at Kennedy Airport during the winter storm. WNYW reports that the Airbus A380 — a Singapore Airlines flight that originated in Frankfurt, Germany — landed at 12:25 p.m. Thursday on a snowy runway at Stewart International Airport. The runway was long enough for the world's largest passenger plane, but the gates were too small for it. Passengers took a portable stairwell onto the tarmac and walked into the airport building. Then the airline provided ground transportation.
• The late President Millard Fillmore's annual birthday party was still on Friday, but was cut short by cold. The University at Buffalo holds a graveside service for the 13th U.S. president — and the university's first chancellor — each January. But with single-digit temperatures in the forecast, this year's program on Friday was shortened to an outdoor wreath presentation, with the rest moved inside. Representatives from the White House, Fillmore legacy organizations and Forest Lawn Cemetery were expected to attend.
Daily Messenger news partner News 10NBC and The Associated Press contributed to this report.