Rains Eases Dry Weather Woes- But Over Ninety Percent of Oklahoma Remains in DroughtThu, 12 Jun 2014 21:12:50 CDT
Recent rains have helped the drought situation across Oklahoma, but the state is far from getting out the drought. You can see the latest Drought Monitor map above.
The recent rainfall has parts of Oklahoma up to four inches above normal from May 21st through June 12th. The latest map from the Oklahoma Climatological Survey shows the state has experience the 16th wettest period statewide with an average of 5.20 inches. That's 1.73 inches above normal (or about 150% of normal)
More rain will be needed according to the latest US Drought Monitor report released today. The report shows there has been some improvement, but 75.10 percent of the state remains in the two worst categories of drought of D3 and D4.
The most severe drought classification "Exception Drought", known as D4 has improved over the last week dropping from 21 percent to 17 percent. A lot of that Extreme (D3) to Exceptional (D4) drought has been eroded across central and western Oklahoma, and even parts of the Panhandle are now down into the Severe (D2) category.
Overall 91.52 percent of the state remains in some level of drought. Only 8.48 percent of the state in southeastern Oklahoma is not being classified as drought.
In the weekly Oklahoma Mesonet Ticker, State Climatologist Gary McManus explained there are still significant deficits to make up across the state. Year to date precipitation is still the 7th driest since at least 1921 with a statewide average of 10.76 inches, 5.49 inches below normal (about 66% of normal). The recent moisture is helping fill lakes and reservoirs. For example, Tom Snead has gone from 20 percent of normal capacity to 30 percent, narrowly escaping the category four water restriction plan.
McManus says there looks to be more chances for rain this weekend into next week.
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