BUFFALO, N.Y. — The Erie County Sheriff's Office is urging residents to use caution when making weekend plans, especially around waterways, gorges and trails.

With a weekend forecast that includes a flood watch for most of Western New York, Sheriff Tim Howard issued a statement on Friday, asking people to avoid kayaking and canoeing, among other outdoor activities.

The statement stressed extreme caution for Cattaraugus Creek, around Zoar Valley, where water levels could climb to six feet above average.

Residents are also urged to stay away from valley edges and cliff rims. The expected heavy rains could cause the soil to shift.

"The depth of the water, combined with the volume, will create treacherous conditions that will not allow for rapid rescue responses," according to the sheriff's office statement. "In addition to the increased water levels, the water temperature will remain dangerously cold hastening hypothermia once someone gets wet."

A Flood Watch has been issued for Erie, Niagara, Orleans, Genesee, Wyoming, Chautauqua and Cattaraugus counties from 1 p.m. Saturday until 1 p.m. Sunday. Up to 3 inches of precipitation could fall between Friday and Sunday.

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