This Week’s Drought Summary
Heavy precipitation pelted the northern half of the West Coast again this week. The largest amounts were reported in westernmost Washington and adjacent Oregon, where 6 to 10 inches of precipitation fell. Similar totals – though less widespread – were recorded across the northern half of the Cascades. Amounts decreased moving southward, with coastal areas and higher elevations from central Oregon to northwestern California receiving 2 to locally near 6 inches. Farther east, 2 to 3 inches were common across the Idaho Panhandle and the higher elevations farther south and east, including western Wyoming and north-central Colorado. Farther east, heavy precipitation also pelted the southern Ohio Valley and the lower Mississippi Valley. Generally 2 to 3 inches, with isolated higher amounts, fell on a swath south of the Ohio River, central and northeastern Arkansas, and part of easternmost Texas. Moderate precipitation – 0.5 to 2.0 inches – fell on parts of the Pacific Northwest, the northern Intermountain West, and the central and northern Rockies adjacent to areas with higher amounts. Similar totals also fell on parts of the Great Lakes Region, and in the East from the Ohio River to the Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico coasts. Light to locally moderate precipitation (0.25 to locally over 0.5 inch) dampened most of the Carolinas, Virginia, the interior Northeast, and portions of the central and northern Great Plains. Elsewhere, little if any precipitation fell, including an area from Oklahoma and Texas westward across much of Nevada and southern California. Looking at the 48 states as a whole, there was considerably more improvement than deterioration, except for Texas, which saw areas of deterioration across the state.
Moderate to heavy precipitation abetted improvement in the eastern reaches of the region while little or no precipitation fell across Oklahoma, western Arkansas, and all but easternmost Texas. In sharp contrast, only light precipitation fell on areas along the Gulf Coast, and little if any precipitation fell on northwestern Arkansas, Oklahoma, and all but easternmost Texas. Over 2 inches of precipitation ended abnormal dryness across central Arkansas and all of Tennessee, save a small residual D0 area in the western part of the state. Heavy precipitation near the southern reaches of the Louisiana/Texas border also prompted some improvement in extreme eastern Texas. Elsewhere, dryness and drought persisted or deteriorated; this region was the only one to experience considerably more deterioration than improvement. Moderate drought expanded southward through most of Louisiana, and many of the D0 to D3 areas increased in coverage across Texas expanded, thus deterioration covered a large proportion of the state.