42 years ago, a significant ice storm struck the Valley

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HARRISONBURG, Va. (WHSV) — It may be late March, but March is an “anything can happen kind of month.” While March has been pretty uneventful on the weather scope in 2020, this was not the case in 1978.

On March 25-26 1978, a significant ice storm impacted many areas including the Valley. Freezing rain starting falling the night of the 25th, on the eve of Easter Sunday.

According to records, ice accumulation was the “thickest of memory for many observers.” Easter Sunday was put to a halt as roads were impassable, many trees and power lines were taken down, and television and radio stations were off-air.

Augusta County and Staunton were notably hit hard by this ice storm. An icy wonderland brought 15,000 acres of tree and power line damage. The estimated cost of damage was $9.5 million. No deaths or injuries occurred, but property and crop damage was extensive.