By Mona Rivera

NEW YORK (1010 WINS) — As Long Islanders continue to dig out from the latest storm which brought snow, sleet, and then more snow, many were talking about the lightning and thunder that accompanied the heavy wintry mix.

1010 WINS’ Mona Rivera with Long Islanders who were surprised by the thunder and lightning that came with the snow

The phenomenon, which is called “thundersnow,” is rare but very much like a thunderstorm seen during spring and the summertime, AccuWeather Meteorologist Eric Wilhelm said.

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Thundersnow is caused by an intense and strengthening storm system that causes a tremendous uplift of air. When the air rises quickly, the clouds rise higher before reaching a certain height and producing static electricity causing lightning to form.

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Richard Tomlin, of Rockville Centre, said he was startled by it. “I saw a light, no noise, and then all of a sudden — three or four seconds later — BOOM,” he said. “I never saw anything like that before.”

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One woman said mother nature appears to be throwing everything at us this winter and she wishes that it was over.

Most parts of Long Island saw up to a foot of snow. In New York City, Mayor Michael Bloomberg said it was the snowiest January since the city started keeping records, besting 27.4 inches set in 1925. The accumulation was about twice the amount that had been predicted, he said.

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