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Remember Snowtober? This Year Should Be Different

REDDING, Conn. – Trick or treating as a snowman next week might seem like a great idea based on last year's record Halloween snowfall, which dumped 18 inches on Redding and the rest of Southwestern Connecticut. But a repeat performance is highly unlikely, although the National Weather Service said signficant rainfall and strong winds are possible early next week.

Regarding heavy snow, Manchester meteorologist Art Horn said, “Don’t expect what happened last year to happen this year, there’s too much variability.”

Last year’s Snowtober storm was highly unusual, but not unprecedented. “The last storm that was similar occurred three weeks earlier in October in 1804,” Horn said.

Last year’s storm struck Redding hard. “There were eight days of power outages and residents were without heat,” Police Chief Douglas Fuchs said. “People were stranded, and it was hardest on the elderly.”

The storm occurred two months after Hurricane Irene, which was a double whammy for residents. “We were trying to recover from the previous storm, so we were severely challenged,” Fuchs said.

The town is in better shape this year. “We have a public relations officer to get the word out on social media, more people are registered for early notification and more families have generators,” Fuchs said.

He also said the town has a stockpile of water and mres (meals ready to eat) that are available at a central distribution center.

Last October's snow was the only major snowstorm of the season, but Horn predicts a snowier winter this year. “Connecticut has been getting colder and snowier over the last 10 years, and I expect it to continue this year,” he said. “Last year, it was an easy winter after the fluke storm in October, but we’ll go back to the long-term trend, so be ready for a real New England winter.”

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