What would have happened if all that rain were snow?

While western Massachusetts saw up to 12 inches of snow from the nor’easter, several inches of rain fell across most of the state.

A good samaritan helps a driver negotiate the hill on Crumitie Road as a snow storm overtakes the Capital Region on Wednesday, Feb. 7, 2018, in Colonie, N.Y. (Skip Dickstein /The Albany Times Union via AP)
A good samaritan helps a driver in Colonie, N.Y. –Skip Dickstein /The Albany Times Union via AP

The Massachusetts coast has been slammed with devastating flooding and brutal winds during the last 24 hours.

But the nor’easter that sent ocean water surging into roads and knocked out power for thousands of residents across eastern Massachusetts failed to bring one notable impact to most of the state: snow.

While parts of western Massachusetts got up to 12 inches of snow, most of the state saw driving rain. The Greater Boston area got between 2 and 3 inches of rain, and East Bridgewater got almost six.

If all that rain were snow, the storm could would’ve had a very different impact.


National Weather Service Meteorologist Lenore Correia told Boston.com that on average, one inch of rain can equal 10 inches of snow — meaning that parts of the state that saw 5 inches of rain could have gotten 50 inches of snow.

“[It] likely would have been considered a blizzard, given the winds we had,” Correia said of what would’ve happened if the rain had been snow instead.

According to meteorologist David Epstein, “too much” marine air within the storm was responsible for the lack of the white stuff in eastern and central Massachusetts.

“This would have been a 2-3+ foot storm if colder, and [it would’ve] crippled [the] area for many days,” Epstein said on Twitter.

Temperatures were lower in western New England and eastern New York, where the storm dropped 1 to 2 feet of snow.

According to the Albany Times Union, the surprise drop in temperature led to more snow than originally anticipated, resulting in thousands of power outages in the capital region of New York.