Christmas storm breaks records in US city
WASHINGTON – Agence France-Presse
Dreams of a white Christmas have turned into a nightmare in the northeastern U.S. city of Erie after a storm dumped a record-breaking 1.5 meters of snow in a 48-hour period, forcing officials to declare an emergency.
Residents took to social media to post stunning photos of the whiteout, with meteorologists attributing the 58 inches of snow that fell
over Christmas Day to 5 p.m. on Dec. 26 to icy winds blowing over the adjoining Lake Erie, one of North America’s Great Lakes.
More snow was expected at a rate of up to an inch or two per hour as residents were warned to stay off the roads unless absolutely necessary and pack emergency kits including tow ropes, flashlights, shovels and flares for essential travel.
Pennsylvania governor Tom Wolf announced in a statement that the state national guard was “providing high clearance all terrain
military vehicles to aid local agencies with medical emergency and law enforcement response.”
According to data from the National Weather Service, the 86 centimeters of snow that fell on Dec. 25 was the highest the city had ever recorded, eclipsing the previous high of 51 centimeters on Nov. 22, 1956.