Drought Information Statement
Issued by NWS Birmingham, AL

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DROUGHT INFORMATION STATEMENT
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE BIRMINGHAM AL
912 AM CDT FRI MAY 25 2017

... DROUGHT CONDITIONS DIMINISH IN CENTRAL ALABAMA ...

SYNOPSIS...The latest U.S. Drought Monitor indicates that the
drought conditions that have persisted across Central Alabama have
improved. Moderate drought is now found only in the extreme northern
portion of Tuscaloosa County northward across extreme southern
Fayette County. Elsewhere across Central Alabama Near Normal or
Abnormally Dry conditions are now found.

The Drought Monitor classifies drought within one of these five
categories:

D0...Abnormally Dry
D1...Moderate Drought
D2...Severe Drought
D3...Extreme Drought
D4...Exceptional Drought

CLIMATE SUMMARY...

Beneficial rainfall occurred during the past several days in
association with an upper trough that developed across the eastern
half of the United States. Rainfall totals across Central Alabama
during the past week have averaged from two to five inches across
much of the northwest half...and five to ten inches across the
southeastern sections. This has greatly alleviated the drought
conditions that have plagued the area during the past several
months...with most stream flows in the area currently above normal
for the time of year.

Some precipitation amounts (inches) for Central Alabama from January
1st through May 24th...

Birmingham   27.42
Montgomery   33.46
Anniston     25.64
Tuscaloosa   25.87
Calera       26.47
Troy         32.30

Normal Precipitation expected (inches)and Departure from Normal
(inches) January 1st through May 24th...

Birmingham   22.89  +4.53
Montgomery   22.67  +10.79
Anniston     22.03  +3.62
Tuscaloosa   22.50  +3.37
Calera       22.84  +3.63
Troy         21.51  +10.79

AGRICULTURAL IMPACTS...

The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) reports that
planting of springs crops is in full progress. Rainfall has helped
improve pastures across the area and aided many of the crops that
have been planted. The harvesting of peaches and strawberries has
begun in some areas. Summer vegetable crops are also being planted
in many areas. Periodic rainfall will be needed to maintain the
crops. In general the majority of cattle and crops are reported to
be in fair or better condition.

FIRE DANGER IMPACTS...

The Fire Danger Risk has changed little across Central Alabama with
Keetch-Byram Drought Indices (KBDI) remaining fairly constant.
Values are currently ranging from 100 to 400 with isolated values
above 400. Values above 500 indicate a Severe Fire Danger.

Based on information received from the Alabama Forestry Commission,
many hardwoods and pine trees have died due to infestation from pine
beetles and other pests. This is a direct result of the drought
since it has weakened many trees making them more susceptible to
insects and diseases. According to forestry officials, there could
be significant losses but the exact economic impacts are not known
at this time. Despite the fact that there are currently no burn bans
issued by the Alabama Forestry Commission, the State Forester
continues to urge people that are doing any outside burning to
follow safety precautions such as not leaving any fire unattended
and having the proper equipment and personnel to control the fire.
Summer Burning Restrictions for non-agricultural burns have been
issued by the Alabama Department of Environmental Management from
May through October for the Central Alabama Counties of Etowah,
Jefferson, Montgomery, Russell, Shelby and Talladega.


HYDROLOGIC SUMMARY AND OUTLOOK...

The latest USGS Stream Gauge Data indicates that stream flows have
returned to above normal across much of Central Alabama following
rainfall during the past week. Periodic rainfall will be needed for
stream flows to remain at near normal or above normal levels as we
continue through the spring season into summer.

Most of the major reservoir pool levels are near their normal summer
full pool levels and have remained fairly steady during the past
week. Listed below are current levels for some of the major
reservoirs across Central Alabama and those from May 18th.

RESERVOIR            LEVEL FOR 05/25/17     LEVEL FOR 05/18/17

Weiss                       563.7                   563.8
Neely Henry                 507.4                   507.9
Logan Martin                464.8                   464.9
Lay                         395.3                   395.9
Mitchell                    311.7                   311.9
Jordan                      251.3                   251.3
R.L. Harris                 793.0                   793.0
Martin                      489.5                   489.6
Smith                       509.9                   510.0
Bankhead                    254.6                   254.8
Holt                        186.1                   186.6

SOCIAL IMPACTS...

Reservoir levels are near their full summer pool levels as a result
of our spring rainfall. Although a few mostly voluntary water
restrictions are still in effect most water restrictions have been
lifted by local water boards and operations have returned to normal.

PRECIPITATION AND TEMPERATURE OUTLOOK...

Drier air has overspread Central Alabama today and should prevail
across the area into Saturday. However...by Saturday night and
Sunday enough moisture will return to the area to bring a chance of
showers and thunderstorms back to the area. Chances for rain are
expected to increase as we move into Sunday night and Monday as
another cold front moves into the area. Some chance for additional
rain will linger along and behind the front for Tuesday into
Wednesday. Cumulative rainfall totals through next Wednesday are
expected to average from one to one and a half inches in the
northern sections to less than an inch in the southeast.

The Two Week Outlook...from May 30th through June 7th...calls for
below normal temperatures transitioning to near normal temperatures
and above normal precipitation chances.

The Longer-Range Outlook for June through August is for above normal
temperatures and equal chances for above normal... near normal or
below normal precipitation.

The latest Seasonal Drought Outlook through August indicates that
drought conditions are expected to improve with drought removal
expected in areas currently experiencing these conditions.

UPDATE STATEMENT...

The next statement will be issued around Thursday June 1st.



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