There’s snow place like Buffalo
Students respond to first Buffalo snowfall, some for the first time
It’s only November, but “Barefoot Longboard Guy” Matthew Romanyk has to wear shoes again.
Buffalo’s winter is quickly approaching and a thick layer of snow blankets UB’s campuses. The National Weather Service issued a winter storm warning for the Western New York area on Sunday. Monday's and Tuesday’s flurries resulted in a record 11.1 inches of snow for Nov. 11. Winter weather can be expected to last roughly until April and while some students were ready for the abrupt weather change in Buffalo, others were less prepared.
Kayden Koh, a senior psychology and communication major, came to UB this fall from Singapore and has never experienced a Buffalo winter before. Koh didn’t like the warm weather in Singapore, where it’s hot all year long, but found this week’s storm excessively cold.
“It became a different place overnight. I was quite shocked by it but it was beautiful in a way as well,” Koh said. “It was really bad in the sense that the snow just blows in your face and no matter how much you shield yourself with like glasses or a hat, you still get cold.”
UB didn’t cancel classes Monday or Tuesday but said its operations teams began monitoring the weather, according to UB spokesperson Kate McKenna. UB cancelled back-to-back classes last year after a storm brought 18 inches of snow to campus.
McKenna said UB facilities was “able to keep up with snowfall, ensuring that roads were passable and sidewalks were clear” on Monday and Tuesday.
And some students are excited for the upcoming winter season.
Carly Connor, president of Schussmeisters Ski Club, is grateful the ski season looks promising.
“A lot of the mountains around here have been posting that they’d be opening up their ski trails sooner than expected,” Connor said. “[The snow] also is a pain for driving but we can deal with that.”
McKenna said UB’s operations team considers conditions and forecasts “throughout the region,” “road conditions both on and off campus” and other circumstances before cancelling classes.
The operations team then presents its recommendations to UB President Satish Tripathi after considering these factors. Tripathi makes the final decision on cancellations.
Some students feel UB should have cancelled classes early this week.
Pria Singh-Lakhman, a sophomore political science and criminal justice major, crashed her car Monday night while driving on campus. She said she wishes classes were cancelled.
“The driving conditions were terrible and the roads on campus weren’t cleared effectively. I felt like I was endangering my life to get to class,” Singh-Lakhman said. “There was so much snow on the roads, my car was sliding all over the place so I tried going slower and when I hit my brakes I slid into a ditch.”
McKenna said each cancellation is decided on a case-by-case basis, but there is a pattern of conditions which often result in cancelled classes and events at UB.
“In the past, hazardous conditions such as high wind speeds causing blowing and drifting snow; heavy and fast-falling snow causing an inability for plows to keep up with snowfall; extreme wind-chills and freezing temperatures and blizzard-like conditions have resulted in class cancellations, delays or early departure at UB,” McKenna said.
Koh said Monday’s snow was brutal, but he looks forward to more experiences in the Buffalo elements.
“That was an experience,” Koh said. “It wasn’t a bad one but I’m sure there will be better ones.”
Features can be reached at Features@UBSpectrum.com.