Southeastern CT Residents Remember the Blizzard of 1978 - NBC Connecticut

Southeastern CT Residents Remember the Blizzard of 1978



    Tuesday Marks 40th Anniversary of Blizzard of 1978

    People along the shoreline remembered Tuesday what it was like to live through the Blizzard of '78 on what was the 40th anniversary of the massive storm.

    (Published Tuesday, Feb. 6, 2018)

    Forty years ago on Tuesday, Connecticut was in the midst of the worst blizzard of the 20th century.

    The Blizzard of 1978 dropped about two feet of snow across more of the state and brought near-hurricane force winds.

    The state was nearly shut down for three days.

    “It started to snow and it started to snow and it started to snow. And before you knew it, we had a good 8 to 10 inches on the ground,” Jim Streeter, the historian for the Town of Groton, said.

    Streeter was working at Electric Boat (EB) at the time and he said the company didn’t close and the storm trapped at least 2,000 employees.

    “So we set up facilities in the cafeteria for them to sleep and for them to eat and that lasted about almost two days,” Streeter said.

    Streeter lives a half mile away from EB and he had to walk home. His son went out and shoveled people’s walkways for days and made hundreds of dollars.

    Simply Majestic's owner Susette Tibus was living in Groton Long Point at the time. With all the roads and highways closed, she and her neighbors would go from house to house for meals.

    “I don’t mean you can get out there and wipe off or scrape your cars. You couldn’t find cars. And cars were just– you didn’t know if they were mounds, drifts or cars,” Tibus said.

    But if someone did go out, Tibus said the only form of communication was a landline.

    “That was scary. You couldn’t get a hold of your family, you couldn’t get a hold of your friends,” Tibus said.

    Social owner Thomas Piacenza was stuck at his future wife’s parent’s house in Norwich. He said his Chevelle convertible was buried up to its roof for three days.

    “They had the national guard come down and clean it all out with their big machinery. Their bulldozers and stuff,” Piacenza, a Stonington resident said.

    Get the latest from NBC Connecticut anywhere, anytime