Buffalo snowman fatally strikes city employee helping with record snowfall

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Buffalo snowman fatally strikes city employee helping with record snowfall

A city employee in Buffalo, New York, was fatally struck on Wednesday while helping in removing record snowfall, officials said.

The Buffalo area was hit with a storm this week that resulted in 6 feet of snow in some areas before the tragedy occurred, and city workers had been working around the clock this week.

The worker was fatally struck at 11: 15 a.m. Wednesday in the area of McKinley Parkway in South Buffalo by a high loader truck that dropped snow into a dump truck in reverse, according to Buffalo Police Commissioner Joseph Gramaglia at a news conference Wednesday.

The employee was not identified, pending family notification, but Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown described the victim as a very experienced member of our city family, with decades on the job, field experience in situations like this. He said the Buffalo Police Department's accident investigation unit is looking into exactly what happened and that the city is left heartbroken.

The driver who struck the victim is in shock and cooperative in the investigation, according to the mayor.

Brown said the third-party contractor the city retained to help with the snow removal was a third-party contractor who was involved in the accident. The police will conduct inspections of the vehicles involved.

On Wednesday, 180 pieces of heavy equipment were active in South Buffalo, and city workers were working long shifts, many working on little sleep to clear out roads, according to Brown.

There is a lot of grief in the workforce right now. We know that people have been working in 16 --, 18 hour shifts, working on very little sleep, so we will suspend further removal operations for 48 hours at 5 p.m. this evening, Brown said.