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Biggest blizzards to hit NYC

Taking a look at some of the storms that have rocked NYC.

Feb. 11, 2006: 26.9 inches

NYC's highest-ever snowfall (on record) happened on Feb.
Photo Credit: Getty Images / Spencer Platt

NYC's highest-ever snowfall (on record) happened on Feb. 11-12, 2006, when 26.9 inches of snow fell in Central Park, according to the New York Office of Emergency Management. Snow fell for 16 hours straight, and winds were recorded at 20-30 mph. The storm is also significant for first giving us the phrase "Snowpocalypse" (which was originally given to Washington D.C., although it didn't really catch on until 2009).

Dec. 26-27, 1947: 26.4 inches

Central Park recorded 26.4 inches of snow during
Photo Credit: Newsday

Central Park recorded 26.4 inches of snow during the blizzard of 1947, which began early in the morning on Dec. 26. Since the storm had not been forecast, New Yorkers woke up to a city blanketed by snow. According to Time Magazine, "long after nightfall, the illuminated news sign of The New York Times flashed an announcement to little groups of people huddled in Times Square that the snowfall, which totaled an amazing 25.8 inches in less than 24 hours, had beaten the record of the city's historic blizzard of 1880. A faint, muffled shout of triumph went up from the victims."

The 1947-48 winter became the snowiest winter on record with 63.2 inches of snow measured in Central Park--until the winter of 1995-96 dumped even more snow on the city.

Watch a video report on the storm from the time.

March 12-14, 1888: 21.0 inches

The Great Blizzard of 1888 held the snowfall
Photo Credit: The New York Historical Society

The Great Blizzard of 1888 held the snowfall record for nearly 60 years in NYC. Central Park recorded 21.0 inches of snow, but up to 60 inches was recorded in parts of Connecticut and Massachusetts. March 11, 1888 had been rainy and the early March 12 edition of The New York Times predicted "light snow" -- but the snowstorm had already gathered strength by 7 a.m. "The Buried City" read the headline in The New York Times," as the city became completely paralyzed. More than 200 people died, many of whom froze to death; railroads stopped running; telephone and telegraph communications were cut off; and nine ferry boats sank, were driven ashore or simply abandoned, according to the Times.

Feb. 25-26, 2010: 20.9 inches

After a generally snowy February, weary NYC had
Photo Credit: Getty Images / Chris Hondros

After a generally snowy February, weary NYC had a dramatic snowy climax to end the month. In the third storm of February, Central Park recorded 20.9 inches of snow on Feb. 25-26, which put the city into the record books for the snowiest February on record.

Jan. 7-8, 1996: 20.2 inches

Central Park recorded 20.2 inches of snow in
Photo Credit: Getty Images / AFP / Bob Strong

Central Park recorded 20.2 inches of snow in the blizzard of 1996, making it the third-worst storm in city's history at the time. Staten Island was hit the hardest, with 27.5 inches of snow. Dozens of deaths were attributed to the storm, and 18 people were admitted to Jacobi Hospital in the Bronx for carbon-monoxide poisoning after they tried to stay in their cars to stay warm, according to The New York Times.

The blizzard caused $1 billion in damages from Washington, D.C., to Boston, according to the New York City Office of Emergency Management. The 1995-96 winter went on to become the snowiest winter on record in NYC, with 75.6 inches of snow recorded in Central Park.

Dec. 26-27, 2010: 20.0 inches

Snow started falling early in the morning of
Photo Credit: Getty Images / AFP / Don Emmert

Snow started falling early in the morning of Dec. 26, catching the city off-guard after Christmas. By the end of the storm, Central Park recorded 20.0 inches of snow, and parts of Staten Island recorded 29 inches, according to the New York Daily News.

But the storm was perhaps best known for the surprisingly slow response from the city. Complaints came in from all over about blocked roads, and travelers were stranded in the airports and Penn Station. "The world has not come to an end," Bloomberg said on Dec. 27. "The city's going on. Many people are taking the day off. Most stores are open. There's no reason for anybody to panic."

The 2010-11 winter went on to become the city's third snowiest on record, with 61.9 inches of snow falling.

Feb. 16-17, 2003: 19.8 inches

The Presidents Day storm in 2003 claimed 42
Photo Credit: Newsday / Alan Raia

The Presidents Day storm in 2003 claimed 42 lives nationwide, two of which were in New York City. Central Park recorded 19.8 inches of snow, according to the National Weather Service, and the storm cost the city $20 million, according to the New York City Office of Emergency Management.

Jan. 26-27, 2011: 19.0 inches

Just a month after the Christmas blizzard of
Photo Credit: Getty Images / AFP / Timothy Clary

Just a month after the Christmas blizzard of 2010, Central Park recorded 19.0 inches of snow on Jan. 26-27, 2011. The storm pushed January into the snowiest January on record, with 36.0 inches of snow recorded for the month. The MTA suspended bus service after buses were stranded in the city in the storm the previous December, although Bloomberg said he had commuted to work on the subway.

March 7-8, 1941 and Jan. 22-24, 1935: 18.1 inches

A late-winter storm dumped 18.1 inches of snow

A late-winter storm dumped 18.1 inches of snow on Central Park between March 7 and 8, 1941, capping off a long winter that had begun with a snowstorm on Nov. 11, 1940.

The same amount was recorded in Central Park on Jan. 24, 1935, after snow had begun falling two days earlier. Despite the high amount of snowfall, survivors of the 1888 storm called it a "mere flurry" in The New York Times.

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