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Niagara County begins sandbagging Lake Ontario shore


OLCOTT -- As Niagara County begins the hard work of reinforcing its northern shore against rising water levels in Lake Ontario, county emergency personnel are reporting that several thousand sandbags have already been filled late today.

Sandbag-filling efforts will resume Saturday at 10 a.m., according to Director of Emergency Services Jonathan Schultz. The county has set up its sandbagging operation at the Olcott Fire Company, 1691 Lockport-Olcott Road, Olcott.

Schultz also indicated that the county would begin deploying filled sandbags along the shoreline Saturday.

The filling site is being made available to the media throughout Saturday's operations. Schultz will be on-site. The Niagara County Emergency Services vehicle, a black Chevrolet Tahoe SUV marked "Niagara County Emergency Management, will be parked at the fire hall, and media are asked to report to Schultz there before proceeding to the fill areas, as heavy equipment is being used on-site.

Legislator Dave Godfrey, R-Wilson, chairman of the Legislature's Community Safety and Security Committee, praised the efforts.

"We're committing our manpower and resources, and making substantial headway, with 12 pallets of sandbags already filled," Godfrey said. "The State of Emergency declaration by the county was coupled with a number of actions we've set in motion locally to protect our homeowners as fully as possible. We're in this fight until the end."