The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) issued its three-month U.S. Spring Outlook Thursday, highlighting a moderate risk of flooding in the Ohio River Valley basin and lower Mississippi River where streamflows and soil moisture are well above normal after major flooding from recent heavy rainfall.
Drought is forecast to persist or worsen in the southern and central Plains, Southwest and California, according to the NOAA forecast as warmer and drier-than-normal weather is likely to engulf the region this spring. (story continues after video)
The following outlooks are for the Southern Region. To read the full NOAA Spring Outlook, including for other regions, click or tap here.
More than a quarter of the country is currently experiencing drought from Southern California into the Southwest, the northern and southern High Plains, and parts of the Southeast. Drought is likely to persist in most of these areas and potentially expand by late June. Drought improvement should occur in the northern Plains and lower Missouri Valley where above-average precipitation is expected during a normally wet time of year.
Temperature and precipitation
Through June, odds favor above-average temperatures for the southern two-thirds of the U.S., extending from California across the central Plains and into the Northeast. The greatest likelihood of above-average temperatures extends from the Southwest across Texas and the Gulf Coast.
Below-average precipitation is anticipated across much of the West and South, extending from California to the south-central Plains, including Texas and parts of Oklahoma where drought is currently affecting the region.
Even ahead of the typical spring flood season, heavy rainfall has already caused damaging floods in the Ohio and Mississippi River basins and brought record flooding to the lower Great Lakes region.
Click or tap here to read the full outlook at NOAA.gov.