First Major Winter Storm of 2015 in NYC

A major winter storm blasted a large area of the eastern U.S. on Monday and Tuesday. Heavy snow and high winds impacted states from the Mid-Atlantic to New England.

Here in New York City, the storm dumped 9.8 inches of snow in Central Park. While that is a substantial amount, it is a far cry from the record-breaking numbers and blizzard conditions that were forecast. In response to this forecast bust, the NWS said, “The science of forecasting storms, while continually improving, still can be subject to error, especially if we’re on the edge of the heavy precipitation shield. Efforts, including research, are already underway to more easily communicate that forecast uncertainty.”

Starting out as a weak area of low pressure, this storm quickly intensified when it interacted with the jet stream and transformed into a massive nor’easter. It tracked further east than expected and that change in distance to the coast made a big difference in where the heaviest snow fell. On Long Island, only a few miles east of NYC, communities dealt with blizzard conditions and over 20 inches of snow.

While not one for the record books in the Big Apple, this storm ended the so-called snow drought in the northeast and brought enough snow for a fun day of sledding in parks across the city.

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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.