ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) — With wind chills below freezing, and gusts blasting through the region creating white-out conditions, schools were closed, thousands lost power, businesses shut their doors, and the thruway closed off from Henrietta to Buffalo and south to the Pennsylvania border.

In our area, households had to endure property damages, like a tree smashed onto a roof on Campbell Street in Rochester. And John Deserto with the Hamiln Morton-Walker District said they actually got an emergency call Friday– for their own firehouse. 

“The roof was peeling off the back of the firehouse, so the wind was kicking up pretty hard, and it ripped the back roof off,” said Deserto.

He said the roof will be fine, but he does have one piece of advice in this storm for everyone: 

“Unless it’s an absolute dire emergency, stay off the roads.”

But plenty were still out Friday making their way through the conditions and challenges. Oliva Smock, pumping gas at Speedway, said the roads are doable… but still far from ideal.

“I’d say go out if you really need to, but if not stay in,” she said.

Frank Vallone was cruising along– and found out he was in need of one key car fluid. 

“Make sure you’ve got plenty of anti-freeze and coolant inside your car,” he said with his vehicle hood up putting the fluids in.

Jeff Tisch said in this drifting snow —day and night— make sure your lights are ON. 

“Hopefully you have good tires on your car at this point. So you know, take those basic precautions,” he said.

Alex Vine said once you are actually on the roads, just slow everything down.

“When you’re coming to a red light, you can kind of (go) back and forth with your steering wheel so that your wheels catch a little bit. And also tapping your brakes is going to help you get traction in the ice,” said Vine.

One extra piece of advice News 8 got from a firefighter friend– was that many people are out there using generators in this storm. It’s important: do not use them in your homes or garages. It can actually pump deadly carbon monoxide (CO) into your living spaces.