Top 10 Worst Snowstorms in History

Even though the winter season is about to end in the next couple of weeks, the snowstorms are still as bad and as mean as it can be. In fact, last February 20, the states of Colorado, Illinois, Kansas, Missouri, Oklahoma, Arizona, and even California have received snowstorm warnings that have caused worry and concern to many of its residents, where some have been caught in the middle of the blizzard, being stranded on the streets. While this event may disturb many of the people thinking that this may be one of the worst storms they have experienced, you might be shocked when you come to know of the top 10 worst snowstorms in history. Knowing this may even make you feel thankful that such catastrophes in the past are never experienced today.

 

10. February 1717, New England

What occurred in February 1717 was so terrible that the blizzard encountered that time was called the “Great Snow” because of the huge amounts of snow that have been dropped down into the states of Pennsylvania and even Massachusetts. The said locations were hit hardest with 9 feet of snow and drifts that are as high as 25 feet, burying most of the single-storey houses. Although it may not be as high as what took place in 1888, the burden was quite hard because there were only horses as a mode of transportation, or even by foot.

 

9. October 2008, Tibet

When talking about Tibet, one of the first things that come to mind is the highest mountain in the world, which is Mount Everest. So just imagine how it’s like in this part of the world during wintertime. However, despite of experiencing so much snow, it’s a rare occurrence that many of the villages within the county of Lhunze would encounter 36 hours of non-stop snow, which accumulated over 1.5 meters from the ground up. Although there were only seven deaths, the storm was so dense that it destroyed buildings and roads have been closed for days.

 

8. March 1971, Canada

Canadians may be used to encountering snowstorms of different strengths and depths, but back in March 1971, there came a blizzard that dumped so much snow in the regions of Quebec and Ontario. Even though the storm dumped 45.7 centimeters of snow with 61 centimeters in some regions, which is ordinary in most cases, the heavy blowing, including the zero visibility and sharp drop of temperature took over 20 people. But what’s even worse for the Canadians during this time is that a hockey game has been cancelled, which is a very rare situation in all of Canadian history.

 

7. January 1977, New York

This particular snowstorm definitely was one of the most torturing and the most challenging as it did not only happen one time, or on a few occasions, just like what other blizzards have been in other years. Everything began in November 1976 with storms that consistently amass more than 30 inches of snow, which got worse on the months of December and January. The winds are just as fierce as compared with the rest, being 69 to about 75mph, but what made the 29 deaths disturbing is the fact that for over 3 months, residents and drivers encountered piercing chills that went to as low as 26, even over 50 to 60 degrees below zero.

 

6. January 1967, Midwestern United States

The northeasterners may have been used to the many blizzards and snowstorms that have raged havoc within the states located therein, the story is different when speaking about the midwesterners. Particularly in the cities of Chicago in Illinois, Gary in Indiana, and Kalamazoo in Michigan, there have been over 76 people dead due to the heavy blizzards and snowstorms that have affected lives and homes. All of these happened even though the temperatures are at a record high during winter, where even tornado breakouts were reported before the storm happened.

 

5. January 2008, China

Timing was one of the worst elements that made a China blizzard turn out fatal and very destructive. Because everyone was so busy at going home to relatives, friends, and family members, 178 million of the travelers have been surprised with what occurred while they were on various modes of transportation. The wind was so harsh that it destroyed 223,000 homes and about 862,000 other properties have suffered damage. Over 129 lives have been claimed at what many thought would be the happiest welcome of the Chinese New Year.

 

4. February 1978, New England

Over 1 to 3 feet of snow had been blown down to the states of Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and even in New York while the blizzard blew over at speeds of 161kph, which caused poor visibility and drifting issues. Although the amount of snow was not that heavy, what made this one of the worst in history is that it occurred during high tide, and it happened in the afternoon; at a time where kids are in school and employees are in their work places. Since many are on their way home, many have been stranded on the road, causing over deaths of 100 people.

 

3. November 1913, Ohio

The blizzard that took place in the lakes of Cleveland was known in history as “The Great Lakes Storm”. There have been 250 lives that were taken as forecasters did not have a clue that a 16-hour snowstorm would be ravaging the town, which destroyed over 19 ships due to its winds that reached 90mph. The said number of deaths has been covered by low visibility, sharp temperature decline, and whiteouts that easily killed people who did not have much clue of what they expected.

 

2. March 1888, Northeastern United States

The northeastern section of the US, which included the state of New York and Connecticut where caught with heavy rains, which later turned into very dense snow from Sunday night to Monday morning. The snowstorm was so heavy that it caused as much as 1.5 meters of snow in certain places and even snow drifts that is as high as 15 to 18 meters. What’s worse is that it took away the lives of over 400 people, aside from the 100 others that have been lost at sea.

 

1. February 1972, Iran

Iran is known by most people as a very hot and dry place, as there are many deserts and rocky territories that can be found within the country. But could you imagine how snow can easily take the toll of over 4,000 people, knowing that they are not used to the snowstorm hitting villages and towns? Whole towns and communities have been wiped out of survivors with over 8 meters of snow drowning everyone who came in contact with the blizzard.