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Philadelphia Weather: Could December 2020 Snowstorm Produce Remarkable Snowfall Range Like We Saw In Blizzard Of 1958?

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) -- The last large December snowstorm in Philadelphia was Dec. 8 and 9, 2013 when 8.6 inches of snow fell. The largest December snowfall happened just four years earlier on Dec. 19 and 20, 2009, with 23.2 inches and the second largest December snow was way back on Dec. 25 and 26, 1909, when 21 inches fell.

Blizzard of 1958 Rips Across the Eastern Coast by PublicDomainFootage on YouTube

Our expected Dec. 16-17, 2020 snowstorm may approach those numbers for parts of the Delaware Valley and could create an unusually large difference in snowfall across the region, with snow possibly measured in the feet for parts of upper Chester, Montgomery, Bucks, the Lehigh Valley and the Poconos, while just a dusting to an inch could be measured in parts of South Jersey. Philadelphia is expected to fall somewhere in between those numbers.

Blizzard or 1958 snow totals
(credit: CBS3)

That huge and unusual range in snowfall is exactly what happened during the famous blizzard of 1958, with snow totals between 50 inches in Morgantown, Chester County, to only several inches at the Jersey Shore. That's a snowfall range of four feet!

That storm also produced the biggest single-storm snowfall on record for southeast Pennsylvania and crippled much of the East Coast. Philadelphia picked up just over 11 inches of snow while the town of Gouldsboro in the Poconos topped the totals with five feet of snow.

Blizzard 1958
(credit: CBS3)

In case you are wondering, the biggest snowstorm in Philadelphia history was 30.7 inches of snow on Jan. 7 and 8, 1996.

For the latest on snowfall totals in your community, be sure to follow us on, on TV at CBS3 and streaming on CBSN Philly.

By Meteorologist Tammie Souza


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