Snow dotted the capital city of Chile this weekend for the first time in several years, killing at least one person and knocking out power to over a quarter million people.
According to Chilean newspaper El Mercurio, nearly an inch (two centimeters) of snow accumulated in central Santiago, with more in the outlying eastern portions of the city of about seven million people. It’s the biggest snowfall in the Chilean capital in nearly ten years, with the last snowfall of this magnitude coming back in August of 2007.
The heavy, wet snowfall, which mostly fell on Saturday morning local time, killed a worker who was trying to clear ice, and it led to about 300,000 customers losing power. As of Monday afternoon, about 9,000 people still lacked electricity.
The rare snow marked the first snowfall observed in the city overall since 2014, and the biggest snow since 2007. Think about it this way: Santiago’s climate is quite similar to and only a few degrees colder than that of Los Angeles, with hot, dry summers and mild, rainy winters. Unlike Los Angeles, however, Santiago’s slightly inland location about 50 miles away from the sea makes it vulnerable to rare-but-not-unheard-of snows.
By Monday, however, temperatures had already warmed back up to nearly 70° under sunshine, quickly melting off any last remnants of the rare snowfall.
For WeatherNation: Meteorologist Chris Bianchi – Photos: Paula & Lali Seyler; Valentina Crisostomo