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Tag: "1973 Georgia Ice Storm"

Your Winter Storm Surprises? Disappointments?

| 9:00 am January 8, 2011 | Comments (11)

It has been a while since a widespread snowfall has been forecast this far in advance with fairly high confidence and good model agreement here in Central Alabama.  There are still lots of details to be worked out.  Remember, this is just the pregame.  The teams have not even taken the field yet.

I remember a similar situation in January 1992 when over four inches fell on a Saturday in an event that was pretty well forecast for the time. (I broke my leg, foot and ankle that day – January 18th playing in the snow.)

And there was the 1993 Blizzard. But although our confidence was high about that event, we could hardly believe it was actually occurring. I mean, it had been 75F just two days before!

Of course, this storm is nothing like that blizzard, but it does have the potential to bring some big snowfall amounts to parts of Central Alabama.

Last night, James talked about the excitement that many of us felt as kids when winter storm threats came along (and many still feel today). Here is one of my disappointments:

On this date in 1973, the trial of seven defendants in the “Watergate affair” was set to begin.

The Paris peace talks were resuming in an effort to end the Vietnam War.

The main headlines told the story of a sniper atop the Howard Johnson’s Hotel (now the Holiday Inn) in downtown New Orleans that paralyzed the Crescent City’s business district for the better part of a day and a half. Nine people were killed. I remember that event well.

Even as that story unfolded, Atlanta and northern Georgia was in the deep freeze and in the dark after a weekend ice storm. As much as four inches of ice coated most of northern Georgia, leaving 300,000 people without electricity for as much as a week. Damage was estimated at $25 million.

Alabama narrowly escaped this event with mainly a heavy, cold rain, although some icing was reported from Fayette to Scottsboro and along the eastern side of the state to near Talladega. Significant icing was reported around Muscle Shoals.

I remember the winter weather event as well, hoping that the wintry precipitation would extend down into Birmingham on that Sunday on the oft chance that the schools would be closed on Monday the 8th. We woke up to no white stuff, just rain.

What are your biggest Alabama winter storm surprises and disappointments? Share them by commenting below.