Source: USDM | Data valid 4-2-19; Map released 4-4-19
Large portions of the continental United States remained free of drought or abnormal dryness this week. The Northeast was completely free of drought or abnormal dryness, as was the Midwest, where significant river flooding concerns continued. Short-term dryness continued in parts of central and western Texas, with some moderate and severe drought shifting northward, while widespread rain in southern Texas led to improvements in conditions there. Short-term precipitation deficits in southern Alabama, southern Georgia, southern Louisiana, the Florida Panhandle, and South Carolina led to the expansion of abnormal dryness and moderate drought in some of these areas. Moderate drought was also expanded in parts of north-central Washington in response to short-term precipitation deficits there. Another dry week in Hawaii led to degradation in drought conditions on most of the islands.
South: Aside from southern Texas and northeastern Oklahoma, much of the region was dry over the past week. Temperatures were below normal in most of the region, except for southwestern Texas and the western Texas Panhandle. Moderate drought was added this week in southwestern Louisiana and in the Baton Rouge area because of short-term precipitation deficits over the past few months. Very dry conditions over the past 3 months led to moderate drought expanding into the Austin area. Severe drought shifted northward in parts of south-central Texas in response to changes in short-term precipitation deficits there. After a widespread half-inch or more of precipitation this past week, short-term precipitation shortages were alleviated enough for widespread improvement in drought conditions in southern Texas. Elsewhere, some short-term dryness was taking place in Arkansas and Tennessee, but this was outweighed by longer-term precipitation surpluses.
Looking Ahead: Widespread precipitation is forecast this week from the Central Plains eastward through the East Coast. The heaviest amounts are forecast in eastern Texas and Arkansas and in the central Gulf Coast states. Precipitation is also forecast in the Sierra Nevada, northwestern California, western Washington and Oregon, and mountainous areas of Wyoming, northern Utah, and Idaho. Widespread above-normal temperatures are forecast over the next week, particularly in the central continental United States.