• Michael Carlowicz


In 1996, the northeast region of the United States endured the wettest year since complete records were first kept in 1894, according to the Northeast Region Climate Center at Cornell University. The 12-state average of 53.89 inches of precipitation broke the old recordof 51.34 inches, set in 1972 when Hurricane Agnes blew through the area. The normal yearly precipitation for the Northeast is 41.90 inches.

Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York, Pennsylvania, and West Virginia all set precipitation records in 1996; Connecticut, New Jersey, Delaware, and Vermont all ranked 1996 among the top five years of precipitation in state history. The wettest state, Massachusetts, was doused with 60.98 inches—it normally receives 45.39 inches of precipitation in a year.