Drought Update for October 24: Despite rain Thursday, no change in drought conditions

tnvalley-drought-monitor

DROUGHT INFORMATION STATEMENT
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE HUNTSVILLE AL
1151 AM CDT MON OCT 24 2016

…DROUGHT UPDATE FOR MONDAY…OCTOBER 24TH…

SYNOPSIS… /NO CHANGE AS OF OCTOBER 18TH 2016/
ACCORDING TO THE DROUGHT MONITOR VALID TUESDAY…OCTOBER 18TH
2016…EXCEPTIONAL DROUGHT /D4/ CONDITIONS REMAINED ACROSS MUCH OF
CENTRAL AND EASTERN JACKSON COUNTY AND ABOUT THE NORTHERN QUARTER OF
DEKALB COUNTY. EXTREME DROUGHT /D3/ CONDITIONS WERE PRESENT IN THE
REMAINDER OF DEKALB COUNTY…ALL OF MARSHALL COUNTY…FAR EASTERN
CULLMAN COUNTY…EASTERN MORGAN COUNTY…AND MUCH OF SOUTHERN AND
EASTERN MADISON COUNTIES. A SMALL AREA OF D3 DROUGHT WAS ALSO LOCATED
IN CENTRAL LAUDERDALE COUNTY. ELSEWHERE…SEVERE DROUGHT /D2/
CONDITIONS DOMINATED MUCH OF THE REMAINDER OF NORTH CENTRAL AND
NORTHWESTERN ALABAMA…WITH JUST A SMALL AREA OF MODERATE DROUGHT
/D1/ IN FAR WESTERN PORTIONS OF COLBERT AND LAUDERDALE COUNTIES.

IN SOUTHERN MIDDLE TENNESSEE…D1 CONDITIONS DOMINATED MUCH OF THE
AREA…ALTHOUGH D2 DROUGHT WAS PRESENT ACROSS EXTREME SOUTHERN
PORTIONS OF LINCOLN COUNTY AND SOUTHERN AND EASTERN PORTIONS OF
FRANKLIN COUNTY…WHILE A SMALL AREA OF D3 AND D4 CONDITIONS WERE
PRESENT IN FAR SOUTHEASTERN FRANKLIN COUNTY.

SUMMARY OF IMPACTS:
STATE AND LOCAL DECLARATIONS: THE ALABAMA DEPARTMENT OF ECONOMIC AND
COMMUNITY AFFAIRS (ADECA) OFFICE OF WATER RESOURCES HAS NOW PLACED
ALL ALABAMA COUNTIES IN THE HUNTSVILLE COUNTY WARNING AND FORECAST
AREA IN A ‘DROUGHT EMERGENCY’. THIS LEVEL OF DECLARATION WILL BE
ISSUED WHEN MOISTURE INDICATORS ARE NEAR THE LOWEST TWO PERCENT OF
RECORDED HISTORICAL CONDITIONS AND APPROACHING OR ACHIEVING RECORD
DRY LEVELS.

WATER AND UTILITIES SYSTEMS IN CULLMAN COUNTY ARE REQUESTING
VOLUNTARY WATER CONSERVATION FROM CITIZENS DUE TO THE DROUGHT.

AGRICULTURAL IMPACTS:
PER THE LATEST CROP AND PROGRESS CONDITION REPORT FROM THE USDA
NATIONAL AGRICULTURAL STATISTICS SERVICE…THE FARM SERVICE AGENCY
(FSA) IN LIMESTONE COUNTY ALABAMA REPORTS THAT WHEAT PLANNING IS
BEING DELAYED DUE TO THE DROUGHT…WITH MOST PRODUCERS SAYING THAT
THE SEEDS (IF PLANTED) WOULD NOT EVEN GERMINATE OR SPROUT LATER IN
THE SEASON.

FARM SERVICE AGENTS IN MOORE AND FRANKLIN COUNTIES IN TENNESSEE
REPORT THAT DUE TO THE DRY CONDITIONS…FARMERS ARE HAVING TO HAUL
WATER AND HAY TO CATTLE IN THE FIELDS. THOUGH THE DRY CONDITIONS ARE
BENEFICIAL FOR THE CURRENT HARVEST ONGOING…THE EXTREMELY DRY
CONDITIONS ARE A MAJOR CAUSE FOR CONCERN FOR THE FALL PLANTING. AS A
RESULT OF THIS…THE HAY THAT IS NOW BEING USED TO FEED CATTLE IS
QUICKLY DEPLETING THE STOCK FOR THE WINTER…SO FARMERS ARE
CONCERNED.

COUNTIES IN EXTREME DROUGHT /D3/ FOR ANY PORTION OF TIME
AUTOMATICALLY QUALIFY FOR U.S. DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE (USDA)
PRIMARY NATURAL DISASTER STATUS. AS OF OCTOBER 5TH…THE USDA HAD
OFFICIALLY DESIGNATED COLBERT…DEKALB…FRANKLIN (AL)…JACKSON…
MADISON…MARSHALL…MORGAN…LAWRENCE…AND LIMESTONE COUNTIES AS
PRIMARY NATURAL DISASTER AREAS DUE TO DAMAGES AND LOSSES CAUSED BY
THE RECENT DROUGHT. IN SOUTHERN MIDDLE TENNESSEE…FRANKLIN…
LINCOLN AND MOORE COUNTIES ARE ALSO INCLUDED. PER THE USDA…THE
CONTIGUOUS COUNTIES OF CULLMAN AND LAUDERDALE COUNTIES ARE ALSO
INCLUDED IN THE DISASTER DECLARATION. USDA NATURAL DISASTER
DECLARATIONS PERTAINING TO DROUGHT WILL BE UPDATED AS THEY BECOME
AVAILABLE.

FIRE DANGER IMPACTS:
EFFECTIVE OCTOBER 12TH…A DROUGHT EMERGENCY DECLARATION WAS SIGNED
BY THE GOVERNOR OF ALABAMA DUE TO THE EXTREMELY DRY CONDITIONS IN
PLACE. THIS DECLARATION PROHIBITS ALL OUTDOOR BURNING FOR
46 COUNTIES IN NORTHERN AND CENTRAL ALABAMA (INCLUDING ALL 11
NORTHERN ALABAMA COUNTIES IN THE WFO HUNTSVILLE COUNTY WARNING
AREA).

FOR THE YEAR TO DATE…2336 FIRES HAVE OCCURRED ACROSS THE STATE OF
ALABAMA…CHARRING APPROXIMATELY 30,011 ACRES. OF THOSE…1055 FIRES
HAVE OCCURRED IN THE LAST 30 DAYS…BURNING MORE THAN 12,000 ACRES.
IN JUST THE LAST 7 DAYS…278 FIRES HAVE BURNED ABOUT 2,691 ACRES.
HERE IS A BREAKDOWN OF FIRES BY COUNTY SINCE JANUARY 1ST /AND THE
ACREAGE BURNED AS A RESULT/:

COUNTY NAME YTD FIRES/ACRES BURNED LAST 30 DAYSLAST 7 DAYS
COLBERT 29/258.2 7/27.7 ACRES 2/1 ACRE
CULLMAN 45/1081.521/503.5 ACRES 3/23 ACRES
DEKALB 218/1127.899/573.0 ACRES 16/330 ACRES
FRANKLIN 24/167.3 9/33.8 ACRES 0/0 ACRES
JACKSON58/471.7 26/243.2 ACRES1/150 ACRES
LAUDERDALE 14/148.110/129.9 ACRES 4/1 ACRE
LAWRENCE30/363.6 17/154 ACRES 4/70 ACRES
LIMESTONE 25/378.313/123.4 ACRES 5/6 ACRES
MADISON 9/29.3 2/8.0 ACRES 0/0 ACRES
MARSHALL 47/205.434/152.3 ACRES 4/17 ACRES
MORGAN23/236.2 11/57.7 ACRES 2/.4 ACRES

THESE DATA ARE PROVIDED BY THE ALABAMA FORESTRY COMMISSION AND ARE
UPDATED DAILY ON THEIR WEBSITE (PROVIDED AT THE END OF THIS
STATEMENT). THESE DATA ARE ONLY VALID ON THE DAY THAT THE DROUGHT
STATEMENT IS ISSUED. PLEASE REFER TO THEIR WEBSITE FOR THE MOST
RECENT FIRE INFORMATION.

THE TENNESSEE DIVISION OF FORESTRY HAS NO CURRENT BURN RESTRICTIONS
IN PLACE…HOWEVER CITIZENS ARE REQUIRED TO OBTAIN BURN PERMITS AND
FOLLOW OUTDOOR BURNING SAFETY RECOMMENDATIONS. PEOPLE CONDUCTING
OUTDOOR BURNING ARE ALSO URGED TO CHECK FOR ANY LOCAL RESTRICTIONS
PRIOR TO CONDUCTING BURNING ACTIVITY. CITIZENS MAY OBTAIN BURN
PERMITS BY GOING TO WWW.BURNSAFETN.ORG.

THE KEETCH-BYRAM DROUGHT INDEX (KBDI) AVAILABLE FROM THE U.S. FOREST
SERVICE WILDLAND FIRE ASSESSMENT SYSTEM INDICATES VALUES IN EXCESS
OF 700 ACROSS MUCH OF NORTH CENTRAL AND NORTHEASTERN ALABAMA…WITH
VALUES BETWEEN 600 AND 700 ACROSS MOST OF NORTHWESTERN ALABAMA AND
SOUTHERN MIDDLE TENNESSEE. KBDI VALUES IN EXCESS OF 600 ARE OFTEN
ASSOCIATED WITH MORE SEVERE DROUGHT CONDITIONS AND WITH INCREASED
WILDFIRE OCCURRENCE.

CLIMATE SUMMARY:
PORTIONS OF NORTHWESTERN AND NORTH CENTRAL ALABAMA RECEIVED AROUND
ONE HALF TO ONE INCH OF RAINFALL LATE LAST WEEK…WHILE MUCH OF
NORTHEASTERN ALABAMA RECEIVED GENERALLY LESS THAN ONE QUARTER OF AN
INCH. LOCATIONS IN SOUTHERN MIDDLE TENNESSEE RECEIVED AROUND ONE HALF
INCH TO AROUND 1.5 INCHES OF RAINFALL…BUT DUE TO THE SHOWERY
NATURE OF THE PRECIPITATION…SOME LOCATIONS RECEIVED LITTLE
RAINFALL. RAINFALL WAS STILL AROUND ONE TO TWO INCHES BELOW NORMAL
FOR THE LAST COUPLE OF WEEKS WITH THE EXCEPTION OF EXTREME
NORTHWESTERN ALABAMA AROUND THE WATERLOO AREA.

TEMPERATURES HAVE REMAINED MOSTLY ABOVE NORMAL. LAST
WEEK…DAILY TEMPERATURES AVERAGED AROUND 10 TO 20 DEGREES ABOVE
NORMAL ON MOST DAYS…WITH HIGHS MAINLY IN THE 80S AT MOST
LOCATIONS. SOME LOCATIONS EVEN REACHED OR EXCEEDED 90
DEGREES…BREAKING RECORD HIGH TEMPERATURES. HOWEVER…A COLDER
AIRMASS MOVED INTO THE REGION ON FRIDAY…DROPPING TEMPERATURES TO
NEAR OR BELOW NORMAL DAILY VALUES THROUGH THE WEEKEND.

DURING THE SPRING AND INTO SUMMER /MARCH THROUGH LATE SEPTEMBER/…
TEMPERATURES HAVE AVERAGED WELL ABOVE NORMAL…WHICH HAS HELPED LEAD
TO THE DEVELOPMENT AND SUSTENANCE OF DROUGHT CONDITIONS.
OFFICIALLY…FROM MARCH 1ST THROUGH OCTOBER 23RD…AT HUNTSVILLE AND
MUSCLE SHOALS…THIS PERIOD RANKS AS THE WARMEST ON RECORD. AT
SCOTTSBORO…THIS PERIOD RANKS AS THE SECOND WARMEST ON RECORD.

MOST LOCATIONS ARE AROUND THREE TO FOUR INCHES OF RAINFALL BELOW
NORMAL FOR THE LAST 30 DAYS. OVER THE LAST SIX MONTHS (180
DAYS)…MANY LOCATIONS IN NORTH CENTRAL AND NORTHEASTERN ALABAMA HAVE
CONSIDERABLE RAINFALL DEFICITS…RANGING FROM AROUND FOUR TO SIX
INCHES OF RAINFALL BELOW NORMAL IN PARTS OF NORTHWESTERN
ALABAMA…TO NEARLY 16 INCHES BELOW NORMAL IN THE NORTHEAST. NEAR THE
HEART OF THE WORST DROUGHT CONDITONS AT SCOTTSBORO…THE
PRECIPITATION DEFICIT OVER THE LAST SIX MONTHS (THROUGH OCTOBER 24TH)
IS 13.40 INCHES…WHILE THE PRECIPITATION DEFICIT FOR THE YEAR IS
14.91 INCHES. SCOTTSBORO IS JUST AROUND 50% OF THEIR NORMAL RAINFALL
FOR THE PAST SIX MONTHS.

PRECIPITATION/TEMPERATURE OUTLOOK:
TEMPERATURES ARE EXPECTED TO BE ABOVE NORMAL FOR THE NEXT WEEK…WITH
DAYTIME HIGHS MAINLY IN THE MID 70S TO LOW 80S…AND NIGHTTIME LOWS
WARMING FROM THE 40S EARLY IN THE WEEK TO THE 50S BY MID-WEEK. A COLD
FRONT WILL BRING CHANCES FOR CLOUDS AND RAIN ON WEDNESDAY NIGHT AND
THURSDAY…BUT PRECIPITATION AMOUNTS ARE EXPECTED TO BE GENERALLY
LIGHT…AT A QUARTER INCH OR LESS.

THE OUTLOOK FOR WEEK TWO /OCT 31ST – NOV 6TH/ FROM THE CLIMATE
PREDICTION CENTER STRONGLY FAVORS ABOVE NORMAL TEMPERATURES AND BELOW
NORMAL PRECIPITATION. THE LATEST EXPERIMENTAL THREE AND FOUR WEEK
OUTLOOK CONTINUES TO FAVOR ABOVE NORMAL TEMPERATURES AND BELOW NORMAL
PRECIPITATION FOR THE REGION.

THE LATEST SEASONAL DROUGHT OUTLOOK VALID FROM OCTOBER 20TH TO
JANUARY 31ST INDICATES THAT DROUGHT IS LIKELY TO PERSIST ACROSS THE
REGION. THIS INCLUDES ALL OF NORTHERN ALABAMA AND ADJACENT AREAS OF
SOUTHERN MIDDLE TENNESSEE.

HYDROLOGIC SUMMARY AND OUTLOOK…
RIVER AND CREEK STREAMFLOWS HAVE DETERIORATED OVER THE PAST SEVEN
DAYS. FOLLOWING ARE SEVEN-DAY AVERAGE STREAMFLOW PERCENTILE
STATISTICS FOR SITES WITH VERY LOW STREAMFLOWS FOR THIS TIME OF YEAR:
/UPDATED OCTOBER 24TH 2016/

PAINT ROCK RIVER AT WOODVILLE 4TH PERCENTILE
CYPRESS CREEK NEAR FLORENCE: 4TH PERCENTILE
ELK RIVER AT PROSPECT TENNESSEE: 10TH PERCENTILE
LIMESTONE CREEK NEAR ATHENS: 10TH PERCENTILE
SHOAL CREEK AT IRON CITY TENNESSEE: 14TH PERCENTILE
FLINT RIVER NEAR BROWNSBORO: 15TH PERCENTILE
BIG WILLS CREEK AT FORT PAYNE: 15TH PERCENTILE
BIG NANCE CREEK AT COURTLAND: 21ST PERCENTILE

LAKE AND RIVER LEVELS ALONG THE HEAVILY REGULATED TENNESSEE RIVER
SYSTEM HAVE LARGELY BEEN UNAFFECTED BY THE DROUGHT CONDITIONS THIS
YEAR AND ARE OPERATING WITHIN NORMAL POOL LEVELS. HOWEVER…BEAR AND
LITTLE BEAR CREEKS…AND CEDAR CREEK…ARE OPERATING BELOW THE GUIDE
CURVES FOR THIS TIME OF YEAR. ALABAMA POWER REPORTS THAT DRY
CONDITIONS ARE HAVING AN IMPACT ON SOME LAKE LEVELS UNDER THEIR
CONTROL…INCLUDING LEWIS SMITH LAKE. THE LAKE IS OPERATING BELOW ITS
NORMAL GUIDE CURVE FOR THIS TIME OF YEAR.

ACCORDING TO THE CLIMATE PREDICTION CENTER…THE LATEST DAILY SOIL
MOISTURE RANKINGS AS OF OCTOBER 19TH CONTINUE TO INDICATE ABNORMALLY
LOW SOIL MOISTURE CONDITIONS ACROSS THE AREA. SOIL MOISTURE RANKING
PERCENTILES ARE GENERALLY IN THE 1ST TO 5TH PERCENTILES FOR THIS TIME
OF YEAR.

THE U.S. GEOLOGICAL SURVEY GROUNDWATER WELL SITE IN CULLMAN COUNTY
SHOWS THAT GROUNDWATER LEVELS FELL BELOW THE DAILY MEDIAN VALUE
DURING THE MARCH TO LATE APRIL PERIOD AND HAVE SINCE REMAINED BELOW
AVERAGE SINCE THAT TIME. WATER LEVELS HAVE DROPPED RAPIDLY SINCE
SEPTEMBER. GROUNDWATER LEVELS AT THE MONITORING SITE IN LAWRENCE
COUNTY HAVE DECLINED RAPIDLY AS WELL SINCE SEPTEMBER…WITH
GROUNDWATER DEPTHS NOW AROUND SIX TO SEVEN FEET BELOW THE MEDIAN
STATISTIC FOR THIS TIME OF YEAR.

THE OUTLOOK FOR SOIL MOISTURE AND STREAMFLOWS IS FOR CONTINUED
GRADUAL DEGRADATION DUE TO THE WARM TEMPERATURES AND MOSTLY DRY
WEATHER EXPECTED FOR THIS WEEK.

NEXT ISSUANCE DATE:
THE NEXT DROUGHT STATEMENT WILL BE ISSUED THURSDAY…OCTOBER 27TH.

&&

RELATED WEB SITES…
/USE LOWER CASE/

U.S. DROUGHT MONITOR WEB PAGE…HTTP://DROUGHTMONITOR.UNL.EDU

CLIMATE PREDICTION CENTER…
HTTP://WWW.CPC.NCEP.NOAA.GOV

FOR INFORMATION ABOUT ALABAMA DROUGHT DECLARATIONS…VISIT
HTTP://WWW.ADECA.ALABAMA.GOV/DIVISIONS/OWR/PAGES/DEFAULT.ASPX

FOR INFORMATION FROM THE ALABAMA FORESTRY COMMISSION…VISIT
HTTP://FORESTRY.ALABAMA.GOV/

RADAR ESTIMATED PRECIPITATION AMOUNTS CAN BE OBTAINED FROM…
HTTP://WATER.WEATHER.GOV/PRECIP

STREAMFLOWS ARE OBTAINED FROM THE USGS AT…
HTTP://WATERWATCH.USGS.GOV/INDEX.PHP

LAKE LEVELS FOR THE TENNESSEE RIVER LAKES CAN BE OBTAINED FROM
HTTP://WWW.TVA.COM/LAKEINFO/

USGS GROUNDWATER WELL SITE INFORMATION FOR ALABAMA…
HTTP://WATERDATA.USGS.GOV/AL/NWIS/CURRENT/
?TYPE=GW&GROUP_KEY=COUNTY_CD

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS…

SOME DATA USED IN THIS STATEMENT WERE PROVIDED BY THE U.S.
DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE…THE U.S. GEOLOGICAL SURVEY…THE
TENNESSEE VALLEY AUTHORITY…AND THE STATES OF ALABAMA AND
TENNESSEE.

QUESTIONS OR COMMENTS…

FOR QUESTIONS OR COMMENTS ON THE DROUGHT…CONTACT:
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE HUNTSVILLE
320A SPARKMAN DRIVE
HUNTSVILLE AL 35805
PHONE: 256-890-8503
SR-HUN.WEBMASTER@NOAA.GOV