BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) - The flu outbreak is reaching an epic scale with the number of local cases skyrocketing.
Health experts say the flu season in western New York is hitting more people and also starting earlier this year. In the last three weeks, Erie County has seen a spike in cases. By the end of last week, there were more than 200 positive lab reports.
Across the country, 18 children have already died this flu season. Health officials believe a new influenza strain is to blame.
Erie County Health Commissioner Dr. Gale Burstein said, "We've never seen them before. So if you've been immunized in the past, you don't have any immunity to it; or if you've been exposed to the flu in the past, you've never seen these strains. So unless we've been immunized, none of us have any immunity to help protect ourselves against these types of viruses."
Dr. Burstein more people are getting the flu this year because people are staying indoors, which allows the virus to spread. She says you should get the flu shot if you haven't already done so.
Buffalo Police have arrested 26-year-old Nicholas Finnegan, of South Buffalo, in connection to the November death of Russ Ross.
Police say there were 32 burglaries, 20 in Albion, five in Medina, four in Oakfield and three in the City of Lockport.
A seven-year-old Buffalo girl got dropped off more than three miles away from the bus stop where her mother was waiting for her on Wednesday.
Police, FBI agents and a bomb squad all showed up on a quiet residential street in North Buffalo overnight.
Berry admitted filing 122 false federal income tax returns for people who had died. He must pay restitution for the stolen money.
The conversation over educational reforms is coming to Buffalo. The public can register for the event, that has limited seating, online.