Here in New England we get a fairly good dose of winter storms. Nor’easters, winter hurricanes, ‘White Out Conditions’, etc. Does anyone know when the last official “Blizzard” was in New England. It seems like the only one anyone talks about is “The Blizzard of '78” but there must have been one since then. What makes a snowstorm a blizzard? Webster’s defines blizzard as “a long severe snowstorm”(kinda vague if you ask me).
Here’s what The American Heritage dictionary says:
A violent snowstorm with winds blowing at a minimum speed of 35 miles (56 kilometers) per hour and visibility of less than one-quarter mile (400 meters) for three hours.
I think a snowfall of at least 1" per hour should also be included. IIRC, last blizzard here in the DC area was January '96, probably the same for up your way also.
I have always heard that a true blizzard combines 1)bitter cold, 2) high winds, and 3) heavy snow. The blizzard of 1888 was, IIRC, the mother of all blizzards in the northeast. I have seen pictures of New York City in '88 with snow reaching up to second-story windows.
Well, I know there were Blizzards of 92, 93, 94, and, of course the April Fool’s Blizzard. No cite, though, and there may have been one after that, too. I know the Channel 7 weather almanac will have listings. Try http://www.whdh.com and look for the almanac.
There’s a documentary currently running on either PBS or National Geographic called “The Storm of the Century,” about an enormous storm that hit the Eastern U.S. in March 1993. It was actually worse in the Southern states (and I’m talking full-on snow - feet of snow - not just rain) but I think it was still considered a blizzard in New England. Clips of NYC were shown and it looked pretty blizzard-ish to me. You an probably find out for sure through the PBS or NG Web site.
The Blizzard of '78 was the biggest one in recent history.
I think the Blizzard of '93 was up there as far as total snow fall, but '78 still had more and, IIRC, resulted in a lot more chaos.
The “Blizzard of '96” was the last storm that I know of that’s called “blizzard.” I haven’t heard the April Fool’s storm a couplah years ago called a blizzard all that often, although in my eyes 3’ of snow on the ground from one storm is about as blizzard-like as one can get.
…Still waiting with shovel in hand for the next big one…