BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) — The next time a blizzard hits Western New York, prepare to get a warning on your phone about it.
On Tuesday, Erie County Executive Mark Poloncarz tweeted that county emergency services are preparing the paperwork to speed up the activation of an alert system.
Under a new system, emergency services would send notifications to all cell phones, televisions and radios across the county to warn residents of an incoming storm. Poloncarz says the notification would be similar to an Amber Alert.
He also said the county is also preparing a 1-to-5 rating system for blizzards based off information from the National Weather Service. It would be similar to how hurricanes are rated.
This comes as the county and particularly the City of Buffalo was heavily criticized for preparing residents following the December blizzard, which left 47 people dead, 46 of them in Erie County.
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Aidan Joly joined the News 4 staff in 2022. He is a graduate of Canisius College. You can see more of his work here.