Drought Information Statement
Issued by NWS Boston, MA

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DROUGHT INFORMATION STATEMENT
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE TAUNTON MA
1140 AM EST FRI FEB 3 2017

...CONDITIONS IMPROVED SOMEWHAT DURING JANUARY BUT DROUGHT
DECLARATIONS CONTINUE IN SOUTHERN NEW ENGLAND...

* SYNOPSIS...

JANUARY PRECIPITATION WAS NORMAL TO SOMEWHAT BELOW NORMAL ACROSS
MOST OF THE AREA...WITH THE EXCEPTION OF SOUTHEAST MASSACHUSETTS.
HOWEVER...WELL ABOVE NORMAL TEMPERATURES ALLOWED FOR RAINFALL AND
SNOWMELT...PROMPTING IMPROVEMENTS IN RIVER AND STREAM LEVELS...AS
WELL AS GROUNDWATER LEVELS.

ACCORDING TO THE JANUARY 31 RELEASE OF THE U.S. DROUGHT
MONITOR...A PORTION OF NORTH CENTRAL TO NORTHWEST
CONNECTICUT...AND SOUTHWEST MASSACHUSETTS IN THE SPRINGFIELD AREA
REMAINED IN D3 CONDITIONS /EXTREME DROUGHT/. D2 CONDITIONS
/SEVERE DROUGHT/ ENCOMPASSED MUCH OF THE WESTERN HALF OF
MASSACHUSETTS...AND NORTH CENTRAL CONNECTICUT. D1 CONDITIONS
/MODERATE DROUGHT/ COVERED RHODE ISLAND AND MOST OF THE EASTERN
HALF OF MASSACHUSETTS. D0 OR ABNORMALLY DRY CONDITIONS PREVAILED
ACROSS MARTHAS VINEYARD...WITH NORMAL CONDITIONS ON NANTUCKET.

* SUMMARY OF IMPACTS...

STATE AND LOCAL ACTIONS.

SINCE DROUGHT CONDITIONS AND WATER SYSTEMS VARY BY LOCATION...
MOST WATER MANAGEMENT DECISIONS ARE MADE BY STATE AND LOCAL
GOVERNING OFFICIALS.

IN CONNECTICUT...A DROUGHT WATCH REMAINS IN EFFECT FOR CENTRAL
AND WESTERN PORTIONS OF THE STATE. ACROSS THE 2 EASTERN MOST
COUNTIES... INCLUDING WINDHAM COUNTY...A DROUGHT ADVISORY REMAINS
IN EFFECT.

IN MASSACHUSETTS...A DROUGHT WARNING REMAINS IN EFFECT FOR MOST
OF THE STATE. THERE ARE 2 EXCEPTIONS...DURING JANUARY THE DROUGHT
STATUS FOR NORTHEAST MASSACHUSETTS WAS IMPROVED FROM DROUGHT
WARNING...TO DROUGHT WATCH. THE SECOND EXCEPTION IS ON CAPE
COD...MARTHAS VINEYARD AND NANTUCKET WHERE A DROUGHT ADVISORY
REMAINS IN EFFECT.

IN RHODE ISLAND...A DROUGHT ADVISORY REMAINS IN EFFECT FOR THE
ENTIRE STATE.

SOIL MOISTURE CONDITIONS...

OVER THE MONTH OF JANUARY...SOIL MOISTURE SHOWED SOME IMPROVEMENT
BUT WAS STILL DRIER THAN NORMAL FOR THIS TIME OF YEAR...
ESPECIALLY IN WESTERN NEW ENGLAND. JANUARY WARMTH KEPT SOILS
THAWED...ALLOWING FOR SOME RAINFALL AND SNOWMELT TO IMPROVE SOIL
MOISTURE AT LEAST SOMEWHAT.

GROUNDWATER CONDITIONS.

DURING THE MONTH OF JANUARY...GROUNDWATER WELLS MONITORED BY THE
THE UNITED STATES GEOLOGICAL SURVEY /USGS/ WITHIN SOUTHERN NEW
ENGLAND SHOWED IMPROVEMENT. SOME WELLS HAD IMPROVED TO NORMAL OR
EVEN ABOVE NORMAL LEVELS BY THE END OF THE MONTH.
HOWEVER...OTHERS REMAINED BELOW NORMAL. LOCALES THAT SHOWED A
MAJORITY OF BELOW NORMAL WELLS AS OF THE END OF JANUARY...INCLUDED
FAR SOUTHEAST MASSACHUSETTS INCLUSIVE OF CAPE COD...THE
CONNECTICUT RIVER VALLEY REGION OF MASSACHUSETTS...AND NORTH
CENTRAL CONNECTICUT.

RIVER AND STREAMFLOW CONDITIONS.

RIVERS AND STREAMS RECEIVED A BOOST DURING JANUARY...IN LARGE PART
DUE TO THE MILD CONDITIONS WHICH ENABLED BOTH RAINFALL AND
PERIODS OF SNOWMELT. AS OF FEBRUARY 1...MANY GAGED RIVERS AND
STREAMS WERE RUNNING AT NORMAL LEVELS. HOWEVER...SOME GAGES
INDICATED WATER LEVELS HAD REMAINED OR RECEDED BACK TO BELOW
NORMAL. THIS INCLUDED MOST GAGED WATERWAYS IN NORTH CENTRAL
CONNECTICUT...AS WELL AS A FEW WATERWAYS IN MASSACHUSETTS.

* CURRENT WATER RESTRICTIONS.

MANY COMMUNITIES IN CONNECTICUT AND MASSACHUSETTS HAVE AT LEAST
VOLUNTARY WATER RESTRICTIONS IN PLACE. PLEASE CONSULT LOCAL
OFFICIALS FOR MORE INFORMATION. THE DROUGHT HAS HAD LESS OF AN
IMPACT ON WATER SUPPLY IN RHODE ISLAND. PLEASE CONSULT LOCAL
OFFICIALS TO FOR ANY INFORMATION REGARDING LOCAL WATER
RESTRICTIONS.

* CLIMATE SUMMARY...

JANUARY 2017 BROUGHT NORMAL TO BELOW NORMAL PRECIPITATION TO
MOST OF SOUTHERN NEW ENGLAND.

WITH RESPECT TO THE ONGOING DROUGHT...THE MOST BENEFICIAL
PRECIPITATION FELL ACROSS RHODE ISLAND AND SOUTHEAST
MASSACHUSETTS...ESPECIALLY ALONG THE CAPE AND ISLANDS. IN THESE
AREAS...LIQUID EQUIVALENT PRECIPITATION RANGED FROM 3 TO 5
INCHES...WHICH RANGED FROM AN INCH BELOW NORMAL...TO SLIGHTLY
ABOVE NORMAL.

ACROSS THE REMAINDER OF SOUTHERN NEW ENGLAND...INCLUDING
NORTHEAST...CENTRAL AND WESTERN MASSACHUSETTS...AS WELL AS NORTH
CENTRAL AND NORTHEAST CONNECTICUT...LIQUID EQUIVALENT
PRECIPITATION RANGED FROM 1.5 TO 3 INCHES. THIS PRECIPITATION
RANGED FROM ABOUT AN INCH BELOW NORMAL...TO NEAR 2 INCHES BELOW
NORMAL.

TEMPERATURES DURING JANUARY AVERAGED 3 TO 5 DEGREES ABOVE NORMAL.
BASED ON PRELIMINARY DATA...BOSTON...WORCESTER...HARTFORD AND
PROVIDENCE RANKED BETWEEN THEIR 10TH AND 12TH WARMEST JANUARY ON
RECORD. THIS WARMTH ALLOWED RAINFALL AND SNOWMELT TO CONTRIBUTE TO
GROUNDWATER RECHARGE. HOWEVER...THE WARMTH ALSO LIMITED THE
DEVELOPMENT OF A SNOW PACK.

AS OF FEBRUARY 2...ACROSS MOST OF SOUTHERN NEW ENGLAND...THE SNOW
DEPTH RANGED FROM A TRACE TO 2 INCHES. THE NORTHERN WORCESTER
HILLS HAD 2 TO 6 INCHES OF SNOW DEPTH...WHILE THE EAST SLOPES OF
THE BERKSHIRES HAD SOME HIGHER SNOW DEPTHS OF 4 TO 10 INCHES. THE
VERY HIGHEST TERRAIN IN THE EAST SLOPES OF THE BERKSHIRES HAD
LOCALIZED DEPTHS APPROACHING A FOOT. OVERALL...THIS SNOW DEPTH WAS
BELOW NORMAL IN EXTENT AND COVERAGE FOR EARLY FEBRUARY.

* PRECIPITATION/TEMPERATURE OUTLOOK...

TEMPERATURES ARE EXPECTED TO RANGE FROM AROUND NORMAL TO SLIGHTLY
BELOW NORMAL THROUGH MONDAY NIGHT...WITH MAINLY DRY CONDITIONS
FORECAST. THEN A ROBUST LOW PRESSURE SYSTEM POTENTIALLY IMPACTS
OUR AREA DURING NEXT TUESDAY AND WEDNESDAY. THIS SYSTEM HAS THE
POTENTIAL TO PRODUCE A WINTRY MIX OF PRECIPITATION. PLEASE STAY
TUNED FOR UPDATES AS WE GET CLOSER TO THIS POTENTIAL EVENT. DRIER
CONDITIONS WITH MORE SEASONABLE TEMPERATURES RETURN TOWARDS THE
END OF THE NEXT WORKWEEK.

THE WEEK 2 OUTLOOK FOR FEBRUARY 10 TO 16 FROM THE CLIMATE
PREDICTION CENTER...CALLS FOR TEMPERATURES TO BE BELOW
NORMAL...AND A CHANCE FOR BELOW NORMAL PRECIPITATION.

* HYDROLOGIC SUMMARY AND OUTLOOK...

DROUGHT CONDITIONS HAVE SHOWED SHORT TERM IMPROVEMENTS ACROSS MOST
OF THE AREA. AREA WATERWAYS RECEIVED A BOOST...THERE HAS BEEN
SOME GROUNDWATER RECHARGE...AND THERE HAS BEEN SOME IMPROVEMENT IN
RESERVOIR LEVELS.

SOME ADDITIONAL SHORT TERM IMPROVEMENT MAY BE SEEN WITH THE SYSTEM
ANTICIPATED NEXT WEEK. RAIN WOULD PROVIDE IMPROVEMENT IN THE NEAR
TERM. UNCERTAINTY EXISTS IN THE FORECAST FOR MID FEBRUARY...HENCE
CONTINUED SHORT TERM IMPROVEMENT IS UNCERTAIN.

WITH A BELOW NORMAL SNOW PACK ON THE GROUND FOR INTERIOR SOUTHERN
NEW ENGLAND...WATER SUPPLY DOES REMAIN A CONCERN UNLESS WE SEE
NORMAL TO ABOVE NORMAL PRECIPITATION FOR THE REMAINDER OF WINTER
AND INTO THE SPRING.

* NEXT ISSUANCE DATE...

THIS PRODUCT WILL BE UPDATED ON MONDAY MARCH 6...OR SOONER IF
NECESSARY IN RESPONSE TO SIGNIFICANT CHANGES IN CONDITIONS.

&&

* RELATED WEB SITES...

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION ON CURRENT DROUGHT  CONDITIONS MAY BE
FOUND AT THE FOLLOWING WEB ADDRESSES...

US DROUGHT MONITOR...HTTP://WWW.DROUGHT.UNL.EDU/DM/MONITOR.HTML
NOAA DROUGHT PAGE...HTTP://WWW.DROUGHT.NOAA.GOV
CLIMATE PREDICTION CENTER (CPC)...HTTP://WWW.CPC.NCEP.NOAA.GOV
NORTHEAST REGIONAL CLIMATE CENTER...HTTP://WWW.NRCC.CORNELL.EDU

ADDITIONAL RIVER INFORMATION...
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE...HTTP://WATER.WEATHER.GOV
US GEOLOGICAL SURVEY...HTTP://WATER.USGS.GOV
US ARMY CORPS OF ENGINEERS...HTTP://WWW.USACE.ARMY.MIL

* ACKNOWLEDGMENTS...

THE DROUGHT MONITOR IS A MULTI-AGENCY EFFORT INVOLVING NOAA/S
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE AND NATIONAL CLIMATIC DATA CENTER...THE
USDA...STATE AND REGIONAL CENTER CLIMATOLOGISTS AND THE NATIONAL
DROUGHT MITIGATION CENTER. INFORMATION FOR THIS STATEMENT HAS
BEEN GATHERED FROM NWS AND FAA OBSERVATION SITES...STATE
COOPERATIVE EXTENSION SERVICES...THE USDA...USACE AND USGS.

* QUESTIONS OR COMMENTS...

IF YOU HAVE QUESTIONS OR COMMENTS ABOUT THIS DROUGHT INFORMATION
STATEMENT...PLEASE CONTACT...

NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE
445 MYLES STANDISH BLVD
TAUNTON MA  02780
PHONE...508-823-1900
BOX.WEBMASTER@NOAA.GOV

$$


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