b'22 BUF TERMINALSsoon made the decision to close the airport. In a notice to air missions (NOTAM), officials said that they expected to open in about 24 hours. But at 7 a.m. Sunday, the airport issued another NOTAM alerting pilots that BUF would be closed through at least Monday.We were getting buried, Guarino says. In some spots, we had 10- to 12-foot-high drifts on the airfield.Little did Guarino know that the original plans to reopen were overly optimisticor that the real work for his crews had only just begun.Converting to Rescue ModeAbout three hours after BUF closed, the focus shifted to helping stranded motorists. By late Friday night, nearly 100 people had been rescued by snow-removal employees, NFTA Transit Police officers and BUF firefighters stationed at the airport and even employees of Lakestone Development, a local contractor that helps plow snow at BUF.People all over the Even though they were tired, firefighters and other employees pitched in to cheer upairport or near it were passengers and motorists who were stranded at the airport. stuck, says Bill Major, chief of NFTAs Fire and Emergency Services Department. Calls from stranded motorists streamed in toBILL MAJORthe airport police and the fire departments from both the Cheektowaga and Erie County 911 centers. Some folks told us they had flown in for Christmas, rented a car and then werent familiar with the area and got disoriented and stuck, Major says, explaining why people were out driving in such severe weather. Others said they were running last-minute errands and got caught in the storm, which got stronger a lot faster than people anticipated.PROTECTING YOUR RUNWAYA cluster of calls came from motorists trapped on Aero Drive, which winds around IS OUR BUSINESS. the northeast side of the airport and passes Runway pavement degrades over time due to everyday usage andthrough a tunnel under the main runway. weather exposure. Crafco offers a variety of industry-leading repairPeople apparently thought the tunnel would solutions that are engineered to withstand the constant impact from largeprovide protection from the raging storm, but aircraft and the changing climate to deliver long-term performance.To learn more, visit Crafco.com instead a wind-tunnel effect quickly filled it with snow. REPAIR SOLUTIONS TO HELP YOU TAKE OFF Fire Chief Major and Assistant Chief Joel Eberth responded creatively, directing the March | April 2023AirportImprovement.com'