What is a Blizzard?

A blizzard is expected to blast a large part of the northeastern United States, including NYC, this weekend. Different than a typical winter storm, a blizzard is characterized more by its winds than the amount of snow it produces.

According to the NWS,  the three key factors in a blizzard are wind, visibility, and time. More specifically, they are:

  • Wind – Sustained winds or frequent gusts of 35mph or higher.
  • Visibility – Falling and/or blowing snow that reduces visibility to ¼ mile or less.
  • Time – Wind and reduced visibility conditions must prevail for at least 3 hours.

These conditions heighten the risk for power outages and often produce whiteout conditions on roadways, making travel extremely dangerous.  Stay Safe!

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About Melissa Fleming

Melissa Fleming is an environmental communicator and visual artist working at the intersection of art and science. She is passionate about exploring, learning, and sharing information about the natural world. She has presented her interdisciplinary work in a variety of mediums at venues and conferences around the world.