When I hear the words nor’easter or blizzard I get a little squeamish. We’re pretty tough here in New Jersey and when we get reports that a nor’easter is coming most New Jerseyans laugh at the news and say “It’ll probably be nothing.”

During a recent nor'easter at my Shore home, the winds at times were gusting to over 40 miles per hour and, true to form, certainly had the sound of a freight train coming through your living room at a high rate of speed, whistle a blowing!

Youtube, Eyewitness News ABC7NY
Youtube, Eyewitness News ABC7NY

Blizzard of 1996

The mention of nor’easters reminds me of the great storm in January 1996, which was what some meteorologists called a superstorm.

The '96 superstorm had a recipe of both a nor’easter and blizzard wrapped up in a nice package that dumped close to 40 inches of snow here in New Jersey with wicked winds hitting in some areas over 70 mph. Plus, flooding happened up and down the Shore.

All the major airports were closed.

Winter Weather

Evacuation of my town

I lived in Sea Bright at the time and it was surreal as the wind blew snow drifts in my condo parking lot over 30 feet in height.

They called for a mandatory evacuation for Sea Bright and my good friends at the National Guard came and got me out of the condo and took me to the radio station I was working at in Long Branch.

Pedestrians brave the wind and snow as they trek across Herald Square in New York Friday, Jan. 12, 1996. The second winter storm of the week is expected to drop several inches of new snow on the area before mixing and changing. (AP Photo/Ed Bailey)

I was on the air for two days straight as only a couple of radio employees could manipulate their way to the station.

While the storm lasted a few hours, it seemed like it went on for days. The streets were baron with leftover wind gusts whipping the snow over what looked like a tundra.

Industrial snow blowers shoot plooms of snow off a runway at the Philadelphia International Airport Monday, Jan. 8, 1996. A record 27.6 inches of snow fell in the Philadelphia area forcing the airport to close. (AP Photo/Chris Gardner)

A dozen or so deaths were attributed to the storm, mail delivery was suspended the Turnpike was closed, this superstorm shut things down.

I remember saying in January 1996 that we’ll never see another storm like that again. Little did I know Superstorm Sandy would rear her ugly head in October 2012. Never underestimate the powerful force of Mother Nature. Stay safe this winter.

Worst Storms Photo Gallery
In this Jan. 7, 1996 file photo, people walk past Radio City Music Hall along a snow covered street in New York. (AP Photo/Wally Santana, File)

The Blizzard of '96 Revisited: Snow totals for every NJ county

The Blizzard of '96 shut down the New Jersey Turnpike for the first time in the road's history. Thousands of people were left without power and heat for days. The National Guard even had to be brought in to rescue State Troopers. Anyone in the Northeast who lived through it will never forget it.

Gallery Credit: Joe Votruba

Counting down New Jersey's top 15 weather stories of 2021

Gallery Credit: Dan Zarrow

More From New Jersey 101.5 FM