Erie County issued a state of emergency and travel ban for the county starting Thursday night, due to the incoming winter storm.

The state of emergency will be in effect as of 8 p.m. Thursday night, the travel ban will be in effect as of 9 p.m. Thursday night.

Erie County Executive Mark Poloncarz made the announcement on social media ahead of his 9 p.m. news conference. He issued a State of Emergency at 8 p.m., and it remains in place for all of Erie County as of 6am Friday.

Travel advisories are also in place for a portion of the New York State Thruway in advance of the lake effect snow storm.New York Gov. Kathy Hochul on Wednesday had issued a State of Emergency for upstate New York.

The State of Emergency is current in effect with winter weather expected to impact portions of upstate New York with lake effect snow through Sunday.

All commercial traffic is now banned on the New York State Thruway (I-90) from exit 46 (Rochester I-390) to the Pennsylvania border. All commercial traffic heading eastbound on the Thruway must exit at exit 61 (Ripley - Shortman Rd).

While forecasts can vary, meteorologists with the National Weather Service said Thursday they expected the worst of the snowstorm to hit the Buffalo metro area into Friday night.

The first snowfall began Wednesday well south of Buffalo. A somewhat disorganized lake-effect band hit farther north than expected Wednesday evening coating roads in the Southtowns with slippery snow.