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Bitter Cold Wind Chills Grip Western New York

By Mark Wozniak

Buffalo, NY – Single digit temperatures and strong winds brought the region the coldest weather of the season Friday morning.

Wind chills in the Buffalo area dipped to minus 12 overnight. Even colder wind chills were reported in inland areas of Cattaraugus and Wyoming Counties. Wally Smith of Triple A says drivers should have their cars properly equipped for bitterly cold weather.

"Have a blanket and shovel, in case you get into a lot of heavy snow," Smith said. "There are traction mats that are sold by retail outlets. Or even throw some kitty litter into the back of the car to increase that traction."

Whiteout conditions off of Lake Erie and rapid road icing are to blame for a chain reaction accident Thursday on Interstate 90, just past the state line in northeast Pennsylvania. About 50 vehicles were involved, including 22 tractor-trailers. Ten miles of the highway were closed for several hours west of the Thruway's Ripley exit.