WEAU | Eau Claire, Wisconsin | Weather

Epic blizzard hits New England

Late last week an epic storm hit the Northeast with New England hit the hardest by heavy snow, powerful winds, and a strong coastal storm surge. What would become a historic blizzard for this part of the country began as two separate systems. One, a clipper moving through the Upper Midwest and Great Lakes, and the other was a Nor’easter that had it’s origins near the Gulf Coast.

Below is a satellite animation from NASA showing how the two storms came together to bring the Northeast to a stand still.

NASA Animation

The storm would hit the Northeast early on Friday and would take much of Saturday to finally depart the region. The amount of snow left behind lived up to the billing. Hamden, CT picked up the most with a whopping 40 inches of snow. In Maine, the city of Portland picked up the all-time record for snowfall with 31.9”. Many other cities picked up snow that was at least in the top 5 of all time snowfalls. Worchester, MA picked up 28.7”. Boston got 24.9” and Concord, NH picked up 2 feet on the dot. Here are several pictures out of Connecticut of the blizzard.

The combination of heavy snow and hurricane force wind gusts brought the area to a stand still. Thousands among thousands of flights were cancelled. Cities throughout New England were brought to a halt and many people were in the dark due to power outages. So far 12 people have lost their lives as a result of the storm.

Friday into Saturday the storm did something known as “bombing out.” That’s when the central pressure of the storm drops quickly. This means the storm is strengthening rapidly. The central pressure of this storm went down to 971 millibars, which is comparable to a category 1 hurricane. Winds gust throughout New England were over hurricane force. Some peak gusts topped 80 mph.

The storm also brought coastal flooding to parts of Cape Cod. Boston recorded an over 4 foot storm surge. That was the fourth largest storm surge the city has recorded.

This was a historic storm for the region and it will take days for the folks there to clean up.


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