Thursday, March 13, 2008

15 Years Ago: Superstorm of 1993

Photo from NOAA. Taken on March 14, 1993 in Asheville, NC.

15 years ago today the lowest pressure ever recorded in Raleigh was set when the barometer dropped to 29.60". That happened as the intense low pressure making up the 1993 Superstorm that some people have called the "Storm of the Century" tracked over Raleigh. The storm dumped 5.7" of snow on Greensboro, but that was nothing like what the mountains experienced. Our chief meteorologist Gary Stephenson was covering weather in western North Carolina at the time and has quite a few stories to tell about this storm. Mount Mitchell reported 50" of snow and a 101mph wind gust was recorded on Flattop Mountain in North Carolina.

The storm was not isolated to North Carolina. It produced tornadoes in Florida and record snowfall from parts of the Deep South through the Northeast. A report from the Climate Prediction Center in 1993 attributed 270 deaths in the United States to the storm. That is a higher death toll than hurricanes Hugo and Andrew combined. Nineteen deaths were reported in North Carolina.
Here are a few links with more information on the Superstorm of 1993 --

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