OLCOTT, NY -- Federal, state and local leaders announced a State of Emergency in Niagara County Thursday afternoon due to rising lake levels along the Lake Ontario shores.
Separate emergency declarations are also in place for the lakeside towns of Newfane, Porter, Somerset, and Wilson.
Officials say the water levels are between 12" and 19" above normal. They don't believe the lake levels will start dropping until May 14th, and they anticipate the levels will be two feet or more above normal by then.
Officials says they have been monitoring lake levels since late last week.
Niagara County emergency officials have resources already on standby, including water pumps and a swift water rescue team. There are 30,000 sandbags ready to be filled. Another 30,000 are on the way to the county.
Niagara County Emergency Management Director Jonathan Schultz said there's the possibility of evacuations, especially for people right along the shoreline.
Boaters are still asked to observe a 500-foot 'no wake zone' off the Lake Ontario shore. The Niagara County Sheriff's Office warned that there may be submerged rocks, docks, and piers.
Director of emergency management says 30,000 sandbags on hand, another 30,000 on the way. @WGRZ— Heather Ly (@HeatherLyWGRZ) April 20, 2017