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Last 4 months were the wettest on record for parts of New England

Snow in Amherst, Massachusetts on April 4, 2024.
Debbie Zacarian
courtesy Debbie Zacarian
Snow in Amherst, Massachusetts on April 4, 2024.

A spring snow storm, like the one on Wednesday and Thursday, is nothing new for this region. But excessive rainfall set record or near record precipitation levels in western Massachusetts and other parts of New England, according to Michael Rawlins, associate director of the Climate System Research Center at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst.

For example, he said, Amherst has been particularly wet.

"Amherst, Massachusetts had its wettest March on record. Eight and half inches [of precipitation]. That's over double what Amherst normally sees in March," he said.

Records were also set in other parts of New England from December through March.

"Providence since December has had its wettest period on record going back over 100 years. Worcester— second wettest, Bridgeport, Connecticut — wettest on record," Rawlins said, citing data from the NOAA Northeast Regional Climate Center. "This has just been an exceptionally wet past four months, across New England, even going up into Maine."

Rawlins said these precipitation anomalies are driven by a warming climate.

Nancy Eve Cohen is a senior reporter focusing on Berkshire County. Earlier in her career she was NPR’s Midwest editor in Washington, D.C., managing editor of the Northeast Environmental Hub and recorded sound for TV networks on global assignments, including the war in Sarajevo and an interview with Fidel Castro.
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