ATLANTA - Tuesday, March 13, marks the 25th anniversary of the blizzard of 1993.
According to the National Weather Service, the "Storm of the Century" was one of the most intense mid-latitude cyclones ever observed over the eastern United States, with tremendous snowfall amounts from Alabama through Maine.
While only four inches of snow was recorded in downtown Atlanta, the NWS said nearly 20 inches fell in other parts of far north Georgia. The snowfall total for Ellijay was 17 inches.
The storm formed off the Gulf of Mexico and was as strong as a category 3 hurricane, but the cold temperatures caused all the rain to turn to snow, according to al.com.
The NWS said the heavy snow warning for extreme north Georgia was upgraded to a blizzard warning by 5 a.m. on March 13, 1993. Roads quickly became impassable by mid-morning due to heavy snow, downed power lines, fallen trees and "white-out conditions." As the evening hours rolled around, snow accumulations averaged 18 to 24 inches from near Rome to Clayton.
Hundreds of people were killed across the U.S., with 15 of those deaths reported in Georgia.
The blizzard of '93 broke snow-depth records within three days in Georgia, Tennessee, North Carolina and Maryland. The total estimated damage in the U.S. was $5.5 billion ($355 million in Georgia).
Wikipedia also calls the storm the "'93 Super Storm," the "Great Blizzard of 1993," and the "No Name Storm."
Twenty-five years later, we aren't experiencing snow in Atlanta, but blustery temperatures are currently taking place across north Georgia, with a Freeze Watch in effect until 10 a.m. Wednesday. Meanwhile, winter-weary New Englanders are preparing for blizzard conditions, more than a foot of snow and high winds as the third major nor'easter in two weeks bears down on the Northeast.