BUFFALO, N.Y. (WROC) — There is little doubt that the snow that fell across Western New York and the North Country last week will be remembered for some time. Though some questions remain, like whether will it be remembered in the record books or not.
When it comes to snowfall, on a state level, only two records are kept snow depth and 24-hour snowfall. The record in question for this most recent event is for 24-hour snowfall. The current record was set back in 1966 in Camden, NY in Oneida county saw 50 inches of snow in just 24 hours.
According to Mike Fries, the Warning Coordination Meteorologist at National Weather Service Buffalo, there are a number of preliminary reports in both Erie and Jefferson counties that could qualify as a new record, but they need to be reviewed by a committee first.
“[The committee includes] A member from our staff here at the National Weather Service in Buffalo, the state climatologist for the state of New York, a representative from the National Centers for Environmental Information as well as the Northeast Regional Climate Center representative at Cornell,” said Fries.
The process can take longer than most think too as they conduct interviews, and dig through layers of data.
“It takes a matter of weeks, to sometimes it can even go longer than that depending upon what the data that we look at uncovers,” said Fries
In order to qualify, the team will be looking to see if the sites where the snow was measured were located away from houses and trees as these can cause drifting which can inflate totals. They’ll also check how often the snow was measured, if it was more than once every six hours or more than 4 times in 24 hours, it could disqualify the report from being considered a new record. This of course also only accounts for some of what will be considered but includes two of the biggest areas of concern and ones that have disqualified previous potential records.
If any of the reports being evaluated meet these requirements and others, it will open the door for the committee of experts to qualify as a new record.