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Erie, Pennsyvania Closes in on 200 Inches of Snow This Season

8 Apr 2018, 3:53 pm

Erie, Pennsylvania is close to seeing more snow than any other major American city has seen in recorded history.

The city of about 100,000 people in northwest Pennsylvania has seen more than 16 feet of snow so far this winter – 193.7″, to be exact – making it the city’s snowiest winter on record, by a long shot. But if Erie sees another 6.3″ of snowfall this winter, it’d become the first American major city to see 200 inches or more in a winter.

We’re defining a “major” city as one with a population of 100,000 or more people. The current snow record for a city of 100,000 or more belongs to Buffalo, New York, which saw 199.4″ of snow in the winter of 1976-77.

Erie gets the majority of its snow through lake effect snow, when cold winds go over the relatively warm waters of the great lakes (Lake Erie, in this instance), and the temperature contrast fuels instability that dumps localized heavy snowfall on places like Erie.

The forecast? Erie may tack on a little bit of snow this week – accumulations for the early portion of it likely won’t exceed an inch or two – before, finally, some warmer weather returns for the end of it. Maybe another spring snow later this month, or maybe in early May, could help steer Erie to the unwanted record.

Stay with WeatherNation to see if Erie can get the record.

For WeatherNation: Meteorologist Chris Bianchi