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The Buffalo News today debuts a new weather page that features additional information and a new look.

Weather news has changed dramatically in recent years. Technology has enabled meteorologists to do much more sophisticated forecasting, and the rise of all-weather cable television stations and Web sites has fed a growing public appetite for such news, particularly in Western New York. The News' weather page incorporates the best information now available, which is produced in collaboration with AccuWeather.

The centerpiece is an expanded map of the region that includes the forecast for the coming day, customized to many of the region's cities and towns. In addition to high and low temperatures and precipitation forecasts for more than 25 of these cities and towns, the map includes marine forecasts for Lakes Erie and Ontario and the Niagara River.

The page has a half-dozen new features, including:

The forecast for the next 24 hours, reported in three-hour intervals. This will allow readers of the Sunrise edition, for example, to check on the forecast for the ride home from work later in the day, or for parents reading the evening edition to get an idea of the weather predicted for the next morning when the children are waiting for their school bus. The forecast includes a "RealFeel" temperature, which takes into account temperature, wind, humidity, sunshine or cloudiness, precipitation and elevation -- everything that affects how warm or cold a person feels.

A seven-day forecast for metro Buffalo. You'll always know the forecast for the upcoming weekend -- subject to change, of course.

An air-quality index, which will be supplemented in the warm-weather months by pollen counts and an ultraviolet index intended to help readers gauge how long they can stay in the sun without experiencing sunburn.

Ski conditions at local resorts, which will be reported during the winter.

A running tally of snowfall totals for the season for Buffalo and seven surrounding cities.

A running tally of days of sunshine in the year to date. A look at the numbers confirms that January was as gloomy as it seemed.

The height of rivers at key locations, a feature that might prove especially important during the flood season.

The weather page will continue to carry important features such as weather readings from the day before, Skywatch, a national weather map and forecasts for major U.S. and international cities.

Updated weather information can also be obtained online at

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