Dozens of Americans dead as brutal winter storm maintains grip on the nation

A majority of the nation has been treated to a white Christmas thanks to a brutal weather system that has seen some of the coldest temperatures in decades for much of the nation.

Now the toll is beginning to become clear as dozens of Americans have died from weather-related causes as of Monday. The death toll is only expected to climb as the nation grapples with this historic storm.

Canceled flights and dangerous roads have led to logistical troubles as well as a significant danger to those traveling during the holiday season.

New York hardest hit

New York was one of the hardest hit states as 31 fatalities were reported in Erie County alone. Buffalo was covered in over 50 inches of snow thanks to the storm being amplified by the Lake Erie weather system.

New York Governor Kathy Hochul ranked the storm as the worst since 1977 and dubbed it “the Blizzard of ’22.”

President Joe Biden has also declared a federal emergency declaration and tweeted, “My heart is with those who lost loved ones this holiday weekend. You are in my and Jill’s prayers.”

The latest death toll estimates put the total number of fatalities above 60. Of course, there is still a lot of work to do especially in western New York.

Americans pulling together

Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown issued a statement saying “We need people to continue to stay patient, stay off the roads today, and as soon as we can, we will lift the driving ban in the city of Buffalo.”

Governor Hochul issued a statement saying, “This storm has brought a bit of everything we anticipated and there are thousands of our first responders, emergency management personnel and utility crews out working in the elements to keep New Yorkers safe today. I’m asking everyone to stay off the roads this evening as conditions will worsen when temperatures drop across the state later today. Bundle up, stay indoors, and stay safe this weekend.”

While it is a terrible tragedy that so many have been lost, Americans are pulling together to recover from this devastating storm together.

Hard work ahead

The storm wreaked havoc from Maine to Washington state and the damage caused will likely be tremendous. The economic cost of the canceled flights and other travel will also take a chunk out of the economy in what is normally an incredibly busy season.

The thousands of flight cancellations that left Americans stranded in airports nationwide will be particularly problematic.

President Joe Biden has vowed to hold airlines accountable for the mass cancellations and urged travelers to contact the Department of Transportation to discuss compensation.

Freezing temperatures and blizzards dumping multiple feet of snow aren’t exactly uncommon, but “the Blizzard of ’22” won’t be forgotten anytime soon.

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