Footage shows houses encased in ice as US pounded by snow storm

Ontario: Houses covered in ice near Lake Erie

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Footage shows houses encased in a thick layer of ice near Lake Erie, Northern America, as residents struggle to dig their way to safety after a deadly bomb cyclone swept across the region over Christmas weekend.

An icy white blanket can be seen encasing the entire front row of buildings facing the lake.

At least 65 people are believed to have died so far from the deadly storm, with the city of Buffalo, New York state, boring the brunt of the most extreme weather.

Some of the dead were found frozen in cars, others in snowbanks outdoors, while some died in medical emergencies such as cardiac arrest while shovelling snow, police reported.

Residents of the city have also been kept under a strict driving ban for six consecutive days.

The storm, known as a bomb cyclone, swept through the state of New York over Christmas weekend and is believed to be the deadliest storm in over 50 years.

The extreme weather caused New York Governor Kathy Hochul to declare a state of emergency, branding the storm an “epic, once-in-a-lifetime” weather disaster, and likened the chaos experienced by residents to a “war zone”.

As of Tuesday, officials said the death toll in the counties of Erie and Niagara had risen to 32.

It comes after aerial view photographs show Niagara Falls partially frozen in the aftermath of the catastrophic storm.

Photographs of the three impressive waterfalls, located on the border of Canada and New York state, show the area covered in thick snow and a thick crust of ice atop the flowing water.

One image shows a rainbow spanning across the top of the falls while spectators, wrapped up in coats and hats, gathered to witness the unique phenomenon.

The icy spectacle was formed shortly after a deadly storm hit Buffalo, in New York, located just 25 miles away from the tourist hotspot.

Emergency services are continuing to locate and remove vehicles left behind under mounds of snow and drifts several feet high.

But scrutiny has been mounting over the city of Buffalo’s response to the massive blizzard as Mark Poloncarz, the executive of Erie County, accused city leaders of failing to clear streets quickly.

Speaking during a daily briefing on Wednesday, Mr Poloncarz said: “We have an elected officials call every morning, and the city of Buffalo was not on it.

“The mayor is not going to be happy to hear about it, but storm, after storm, after storm, after storm, the city, unfortunately, is the last one to be opened, and that shouldn’t be the case. It’s embarrassing, to tell you the truth.”

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