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Pax’s powder just dust in record book

Snowstorm Pax left the immediate Fredericksburg area buried under more than 9 inches of snow, making it the largest storm to hit the region since 2010’s “snowmageddon.”

Before the storm, the region had some freezing temperatures in January and a light dusting, which led to a week off of school for students. But the storm Wednesday night and Thursday was the first significant accumulations of the season, easily eclipsing last winter’s biggest blast, which blanketed the city in 6 inches in March.

This week’s storm made its biggest impact in Fauquier County, where some areas received up to 16 inches of snow. Culpeper received 14.5 inches and Orange got 13 to 15.

Accumulations in Fredericksburg, King George, Stafford and Spotsylvania counties ranged from roughly 7 to 9 inches, according to the National Weather Service.

So far, this winter Fredericksburg received an estimated 12 inches of snow, falling far short of the winter of “snowmaggeddon,” when 54.3 inches of snow fell between Dec. 5, 2009, and Feb. 10, 2010.

Before that, the “Blizzard of ’96” held the title. Twenty-one inches of snow fell on Jan. 5 and 6, 1996, and that winter had a total accumulation of 50 inches.

Going way back in history, to February 1899, another snowstorm paralyzed the region, nation’s capital and East Coast when 20 inches fell in one day followed by sub-zero temperatures.

Another historic blast in 1922, the Knickerbocker storm, killed more than 100 people when the roof of Washington’s Knickerbocker Theater collapsed under 21 inches of snow.

More snow is possible today, though not a lot. According to the National Weather Service, there is a strong chance of precipitation today, starting out as a mixture of rain and snow after midnight and turning into snow after 9 a.m. Total accumulation is expected to be less than half an inch.

Jessica Koers: 540/374-5444

jkoers@freelancestar.com

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