Power outages caused by high winds prompt school closures

A high wind warning has been issued from 10 a.m. Monday to 2 a.m. Tuesday in the Niagara Region by the Buffalo office of the National Weather Service.

Niagara County, as well as Orleans, Monroe and northern Erie counties, is expected to see sustained winds of 40 to 50 mph with gust of up to 70 mph.

Meteorologists with the National Weather Service say it will be a very dangerous situation and are warning residents to expect downed trees and power lines during the weather event.

Travel will also be difficult, especially for high-profile vehicles, they warn. In addition, they say people should avoid being outside in forested areas and around trees and branches. If possible, remain in the lower levels of your home during the windstorm and avoid windows.

There could also be thunderstorms as a cold front crosses the region Monday afternoon.

Additionally, a gale warning has been issued until 8 a.m. Tuesday near the lake shore and open waters of Lake Ontario with west winds to 45 knots and waves 13 to 17 feet expected.

The strong winds could cause hazardous waves which could capsize or damage vessels and reduce visibility.

"This storm has the potential to cause widespread power outages across most of New York, and I have directed our state's emergency response assets to be prepared to help our local partners should they need it," Gov. Andrew Cuomo warned on Sunday afternoon. "New Yorkers across the state are heeding our guidance to stay home during the COVID-19 pandemic, but this storm makes that call all the more urgent."

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