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Blizzard of 78, 35 years ago tomorrow!

Discussion in 'Weather' started by lawn king, Feb 5, 2013.

  1. lawn king

    lawn king PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,085

    I was 16 years old, just shy of a drivers license. Now, after 20 years of commercial snow plowing, i have yet to see a storm that compares to that beast!
  2. grandview

    grandview PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 14,609

    OK,Blizzard of 77!Thumbs Up
  3. captadamnj

    captadamnj Senior Member
    Messages: 148

    You may get your shot this weekend.
  4. lawn king

    lawn king PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,085

    Now thats funny!!!!
  5. ceptorman

    ceptorman Senior Member
    from Indy
    Messages: 208

    I just turned 15, stuck at home with parents. Have not seen another snow like it since.
  6. JB1

    JB1 Senior Member
    Messages: 182

    Ahh the good ole days.
  7. theholycow

    theholycow PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,180

    Let's keep it that way.
  8. grandview

    grandview PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 14,609

    they must of never had to work one like that!wesport
  9. Maine_Train

    Maine_Train Senior Member
    Messages: 462

    If I'd been back home in MA then, I'd probably have been doing the Emergency Management stuff I've done for most of my life. But the AF had me in Central NY until later that year, so I only saw news reports and then later heard stories from family and friends who were right in the middle of it. The part of New York where I was stationed was "snow country," but we didn't get anything compared to what was going on in NYC or back in my home area, 300 miles east of the base.

    Northeastern United States blizzard of 1978
  10. hedhunter9

    hedhunter9 Senior Member
    Messages: 212

    Young and dumb and full of .. ummm "energy",
    We had just got a new Blazer 4X4 the week before the blizzard hit here in Indiana.
    Had all of a 150 miles on it... (no plow then)
    We did a lot of running for the neighborhood, and worked for the civil defense...
    We picked up doctors/nurses. Ran Medicine to shut in's. etc...

    We ran in a team of 3 trucks and a snowmoble... When the lead truck got stuck,
    2nd truck pulled up and yanked him back... Sometimes the 3rd truck was needed..
    The snowmoble sometimes would run the last short distance if needed..

    We would stop by the police dept. and they would fill our gas tanks up.

    Went home and slept for 6 hours, came back out and my road was up to the hood
    in snow... All I could do was go forward till it got stopped, back up and move over some
    and try again. Bunch of digging with a shovel as well. Took 2 hours to get the 3 houses down to the end of our street where Normandy had been plowed all night by a homeowner with his own truck..

    Mckinley was kept partialy open thru most of the storm, but still had Firetrucks and bus's
    stuck in places and they were almost covered up by drifts of snow 8 ft high...

    Bitter cold and blowing wind made if very miserable.

    The drifts in our back yard went to the roof in back.
    My hunting dogs kennels were 6 foot high and they walked right over the top of the fence !

    It was a very long and tireing week....!
  11. basher

    basher PlowSite Fanatic
    from 19707
    Messages: 8,993

    Spent a large part of it in a parking lot welding the driver's side loader arm on a old Case construction king that was broken off from hitting a light post in a hospital parking lot.

    Good thing the ER was close for the operator, nobody wore belts operating equipment back then.
  12. lawn king

    lawn king PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,085

    I bet that left a mark on the poor boy. I always wear my belt, running a cabover makes you think twice about not wearing one! Im dreading fridays storm, 1 - 2' of snow!
  13. Bandit

    Bandit Senior Member
    Messages: 146

    I had a 1/2 ton Ford with really oversize tires and a 7 1/2 ft Meyer plow .
    I was working that day for friends in Woburn that owned a truck garage , we filled my truck bed with old engine cores and I left late afternoon down Rt 128 , dodging stuck cars and driving down the island to get home and put on my plow .
    I lived in an Appt. complex that also owned two other complexes in Framingham and Holliston . They left a note on my door asking if I could be a " back-up " for there 3 plows .
    They blew an engine in one , and a clutch , and tranny in there other two trucks as soon as the storm started . They asked me to just keep the fire lanes open at " Crestview " on Turner rd in Holliston until the storm is over . It is located at the top of a hill with an awesome view .
    After hours of plowing the lanes , When we had made a pass , and looked back to see the area we just came through filled in level with the roofs of the cars , we gave up , on the way down the hill we picked up a guy walking , told us he had just skidded off the road and it was blocked , I offered to pull him out , He gave us a dumb look and an said " I work for the town , I just put one of our Big Michigan Loaders through the tennis court fence , I don't think You can pull it out .
    Heading up the hill , we met a town plow out looking for him , they turned around and escorted us out to the main rd ( Rt 126 & Eliot St. ) to make sure we made it .
    We came back after it stopped and cleared it out using my Commercial 36 " Bolins snow blower and 1/2 ton truck , We also did Parkview ( on Beaver st ) in Framingham the same way . ( Shovel into Blower , move car , Plow , and do the next space , with the residents helping and celebrating each car freed .
    With a toast , No we didn't drink , but did accept the food we were offered
    I didn't pay rent for 15 months on my 2 bedroom luxury apartment . LOL
    Except for a couple of Indian Owned stores gouging on prices ( that went OOB after the storm) , most stores and the larger supermarkets , were taking checks from everyone , and telling them not to worry as they were not going to deposit them till the storm was over , and they didn't.
    Last edited: Feb 6, 2013
  14. hummer81

    hummer81 Member
    from MN
    Messages: 43

    Great stories guys. I am hooked and I hope there is more to come. That puts MN 1991 blizzard seem like a dusting. I know it can be looked up but if anyone wants to post stats with there story for everyone that would be great.. I can even imagine the logistics of snow removal involved, especially in the 70's.
  15. mass1589

    mass1589 Senior Member
    from mass
    Messages: 338

    i was not around for the blizzard of 78 but with buying all this equipment and trucks i say bring it on!! i cant wait to make some money finally! i think in todays world we are much better prepared and have much better equipment. it could be handled more efficiently
  16. theholycow

    theholycow PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,180

    Thumbs Up
    It is my understanding that they used bulldozers to push buried cars off the highway (regardless of damage to those cars!).

    Snow removal technology was sufficient, it was weather forecasting, communications, and warning systems that were not...combined with people not taking it seriously.

    Was googling for a photo of bulldozers pushing cars off the road, failed but found this:
  17. 2006Sierra1500

    2006Sierra1500 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,758

    Anyone else find tomorrows storm ironically similar?
  18. john06duramax

    john06duramax Junior Member
    from CT
    Messages: 17

    In CT we had a 28-30" storm in January of 2011, and I gotta tell ya, even with advanced equipment, we definitely didn't make any money that day. Sure you get paid more if you work it into your contract correctly, if its per push or event, but hell it just takes so damn long you end up just breaking even, if your lucky!
  19. RJ lindblom

    RJ lindblom Senior Member
    Messages: 346

    That was a couple of weeks before I was born. Around here it doesn't sound like it will amount to anything. To all you facing this newest mother of a storm, be safe and good luck.