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Entire mobile home park being evacuated

Posted at 12:31 AM, Nov 20, 2014
and last updated 2015-11-15 00:31:55-05

After initially giving residents the options to stay Thursday morning, emergency crews are now evacuating everyone from the French Quarter Mobile Home Park in West Seneca unless they sign a waiver.

West Seneca has been one of the areas most heavily hit these last couple of days, causing crews to come to the the mobile home park to make sure everyone's homes are safe.

The trailer structures are severely compromised. There has already been one or two roof collapses and many of the homes are without heat. Some residents opted to stay Thursday morning but a total evacuation is now taking place and unless residents sign a waiver they will not be allowed to stay.

Resident Gerald Seweryniak said he's never seen snow like this.

"I think these manufactured homes... these mobile homes... only can take probably two or feet at the very most and right now I think we're looking at five six feet of snow," Seweryniak said.

Greg Burow, Assistant Chief of Getzville Fire Company, said it's actually kind of scary.

"You almost feel helpless, I mean the only thing you can do is get these people out of their homes and I mean you feel horrible for them," Burow said.

MORE | On roofs collapsing in Western New York

Overnight in Cheektowaga, where the photo with this story was taken, the Bellevue Fire Department and other agencies worked to evacuate a number of people from three mobile home parks. The evacuations took place in the areas of Crabapple Lane, Carefree Parks and Shady Acres.

Fifteen to 30 residents voluntarily evacuated their homes, which were without heat, because residents feared they may collapse due to the weight of the snow on their roofs.

Resident Joseph Gergonette said there was so much snow on his roof that they could barely slam the door shut, because everything is compacted.

The fire department says some mobile homes have sustained stress fractures. Some residents did choose to shelter in place. Evacuees were taken to a temporary warming center.

Weight alone isn't the only problem for residents' roofs.

Most homes have so much snow on their rooftops that their vents are covered ... leaving them in the cold.

Gergonette said it's been brutal.

"We were without heat for two and a half days, we just got heat last night, finally," Gergonette said.

And while some residents have to heat their homes with their ovens, others haven't been able to even get inside.

Resident Mike Seeger said he was having trouble getting to his wife.

"My wife's got cerebral palsy, I'm trying to get In to the house I have to at least get to her, the snow is beyond even my control."