Drought Information Statement
Issued by NWS Phoenix, AZ

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AXUS75 KPSR 240912
DGTPSR
AZZ020>028-CAZ030>033-242000-

DROUGHT INFORMATION STATEMENT
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE PHOENIX AZ
210 AM MST WED SEP 24 2014

...SUBSTANTIAL DROUGHT IMPROVEMENT THIS SEPTEMBER ACROSS THE
REGION...

SYNOPSIS...

THE TYPICALLY DRY SPRING WEATHER KEPT DROUGHT CONDITIONS SOLIDLY IN
TACT...WITH SLOWLY INTENSIFYING DROUGHT DURING THE EARLY PARTS OF
THE MONSOON SEASON. HOWEVER...EXPANSIVE THUNDERSTORM ACTIVITY AND
LOCALLY HEAVY RAINFALL DURING THE MIDDLE OF THE MONSOON SEASON BEGAN
THE DROUGHT IMPROVEMENT CYCLE...WHILE EVEN GREATER RAINFALL AMOUNTS
DURING THE MONTH OF SEPTEMBER ALLOWED FOR SUBSTANTIAL WIDESPREAD
IMPROVEMENTS. LONG TERM DROUGHT STILL REMAINS A PROBLEM ACROSS THE
REGION...AND IT WILL BE WINTER SNOW OVER THE MOUNTAINS WHICH WILL BE
CRITICAL IN REFILLING RESERVOIRS BEFORE NEXT SPRING. THUS...IMPACTS
WITH RESPECT TO RESERVOIR STORAGE AND WATER USAGE WILL CONTINUE TO
BE THE LARGEST DROUGHT IMPACTS HEADING INTO NEXT SPRING.

SEVERE DROUGHT NOW ONLY COVERS PINAL COUNTY AND A VERY SMALL PART OF
NORTHWEST MARICOPA AND NORTHEAST LA PAZ COUNTIES. SEVERE DROUGHT
ALSO COVERS THE WESTERN PORTIONS OF IMPERIAL AND RIVERSIDE COUNTIES
IN SOUTHEAST CALIFORNIA. THE RECENT RAINFALL HAS ALLOW EASTERN
IMPERIAL AND RIVERSIDE COUNTIES...AS WELL AS MUCH OF YUMA...LA
PAZ...AND MARICOPA COUNTIES TO IMPROVE BACK TO THE MODERATE DROUGHT
CATEGORY. BOTH LONGER AND SHORTER TERM RAINFALL HAVE BEEN BENEFICIAL
FOR EASTERN YUMA AND LA PAZ COUNTIES TO BRING THEM BACK TO ONLY
ABNORMALLY DRY CONDITIONS. CURRENTLY...AROUND 44% OF THE STATE OF
ARIZONA IS AT SEVERE DROUGHT LEVELS OR WORSE...WHICH IS A VAST
IMPROVEMENT AS COMPARED TO 3 MONTHS AGO WHEN OVER 76% OF THE STATE
WAS AT SUCH LEVELS.

NEUTRAL EL NINO/LA NINA CONDITIONS ARE SLOWLY TRANSITIONING TOWARDS
AN EL NINO EPISODE THIS AUTUMN. THERE IS STILL NO PREDICTABLE
INFLUENCE ON THE OVERALL AUTUMN WEATHER PATTERN FROM AN EL NINO
EVENT. THERE IS A 60% CHANCE OF EL NINO CONDITIONS FULLY DEVELOPING
DURING THE LATE FALL AND WINTER SEASON. ONLY MODERATE TO STRONG EL
NINO CYCLES TYPICALLY HAVE A PREDICTABLE WET SIGNAL FOR THE
SOUTHWEST UNITED STATES DURING THE FALL AND WINTER SEASONS...WITH
LITTLE INFLUENCE FROM WEAK EL NINO EPISODES. AT THIS TIME...ALMOST
ALL SIGNS POINT TO A WEAK EL NINO EPISODE AT BEST DEVELOPING IN THE
NEXT SEVERAL MONTHS.


SUMMARY OF IMPACTS...

WITH OVER THREE YEARS OF DRIER THAN AVERAGE CONDITIONS...IMPACTS
HAVE INCLUDED PERIODIC WATER HAULING NECESSARY FOR FARMERS AND
RANCHERS...AND DISTRESSED VEGETATION AND LOSS OF FORAGE ACREAGE.
LIVESTOCK ON REGIONAL RANCHES HAVE SUFFERED THE GREATEST IMPACTS
FROM DROUGHT CONDITIONS. RANGE LAND AND PASTURE CONDITIONS HAVE
IMPROVED IN THE PAST THREE MONTHS OF THE MONSOON...WITH TOP SOIL
MOISTURE VALUES LOCALLY SURGING IN AREAS OF EXCESSIVE RAINFALL.

AFTER A DRY SPRING WITH THE THREAT OF SIGNIFICANT FIRES FORTUNATELY
MOSTLY AVERTED...INCREASES IN MONSOON MOISTURE OVER THE PAST MONTH
HAVE LARGELY IMPROVED FUEL CONDITIONS. 10-HOUR DEAD FUEL MOISTURE
VALUES CARRY A WIDE RANGE OF AROUND 3% TO OVER 10% DEPENDING ON THE
RECENT LATENCY OF RAINFALL. 100-HOUR DEAD FUELS MOISTURE VALUES HAVE
SHOWN FAR MORE IMPROVEMENT WITH VALUES RANGING FROM 6% TO OVER 15%.


CLIMATE SUMMARY...

THE SEASONAL WATER YEAR (SINCE OCT 1ST) AND CALENDAR YEAR RAINFALL
AMOUNTS HAVE LARGELY CAUGHT BACK UP TOWARDS NORMAL VALUES WITH THE
RECENT WET SPELL THE PAST MONTH. BELOW IS A LISTING OF STATIONS AND
PRECIPITATION RECORDED SINCE OCTOBER 1 2013 AND JANUARY 1 2014. ALSO
INCLUDED ARE NORMAL PRECIPITATION TOTALS...PERCENT OF NORMAL...AND
SEASONAL HISTORICAL RANKINGS (PLEASE NOTE SOME STATIONS HAVE A MORE
LIMITED HISTORY WITH RANKING NUMBERS NOT AS SIGNIFICANT).


                   SINCE   SINCE    SINCE     PERCENT     RANK
                   OCT 1   JAN 1    OCT 1    OF NORMAL    DRIEST
                   2013    2014     NORMAL
BOUSE AZ           7.14    5.65     5.66       126%       54TH
WICKENBURG AZ     14.08   10.91    11.97       118%       83RD
PHX SKY HARBOR AZ  8.49    5.67     7.90       107%       80TH
SCOTTSDALE AZ      9.42    6.34    10.04        94%       MSG
YUMA AZ            3.39    2.28     3.46        98%       91ST
BLYTHE CA          1.44    0.67     3.75        38%       10TH
TUCSON AZ          9.74    6.69    11.35        86%       45TH
FLAGSTAFF AZ      18.50   14.64    21.39        86%       52ND




PRECIPITATION/TEMPERATURE OUTLOOK...

THE APPROXIMATE PROBABILITY VALUES FOR ABOVE...NEAR OR BELOW NORMAL
TEMPERATURES AND PRECIPITATION FOR OCTOBER AND THE THREE MONTH
PERIOD OF OCTOBER-NOVEMBER-DECEMBER ARE GIVEN BELOW VALID FOR
SOUTHEAST CALIFORNIA AND SOUTHWEST AND SOUTH-CENTRAL ARIZONA. THESE
NUMBERS ARE DERIVED FROM OUTLOOKS ISSUED BY THE NOAA CLIMATE
PREDICTION CENTER AND ARE ACCESSIBLE THROUGH THEIR WEBSITE LISTED
BELOW. THE TEMPERATURE OUTLOOK CORRESPONDS TO THE AVERAGE
TEMPERATURE DURING THE ENTIRE THREE MONTH PERIOD...WHILE THE
PRECIPITATION OUTLOOK IS FOR THE TOTAL PRECIPITATION DURING THE
ENTIRE THREE MONTH PERIOD.

TEMPERATURES HAVE NEARLY AN EQUAL CHANCE OF BEING ABOVE...BELOW...OR
NEAR NORMAL DURING THE MONTH OF OCTOBER...WITH SLIGHTLY BETTER
CHANCES OF NEAR TO ABOVE NORMAL TEMPERATURES DURING THE 3-MONTH
PERIOD OF OCT-NOV-DEC. PRECIPITATION TOTALS FOR THE MONTH OF OCTOBER
AS WELL AS THE 3 MONTH PERIOD OF OCT-NOV-DEC HAVE A SLIGHT CHANCE OF
FALLING IN THE ABOVE AVERAGE CATEGORY.

                               TEMPERATURE         PRECIPITATION
                               PROBABILITY          PROBABILITY
                             ABOVE/NEAR/BELOW     ABOVE/NEAR/BELOW
                                  NORMAL               NORMAL
OCTOBER 2014.................   33 / 33 / 33        42 / 33 / 25
OCT-NOV-DEC 2014.............   35 / 35 / 30        40 / 33 / 27


HYDROLOGIC SUMMARY AND OUTLOOK...

RESERVOIR LEVELS AT THIS POINT OF THE YEAR HAVE NOW FALLEN BEHIND
THOSE OF THE PAST 2 YEARS. EVEN WITH EXTENSIVE THUNDERSTORM ACTIVITY
AND GENEROUS RAINFALL OVER MUCH OF GILA COUNTY...LITTLE EFFECT ON
RESERVOIR LEVELS HAVE BEEN NOTED. IT WILL TAKE WINTER RAIN AND SNOW
LATER IN THE YEAR TO MAKE AN APPRECIABLE DENT IN RESERVOIR DEFICITS.


               09/22/14     09/22/13     09/22/12
               --------     --------     --------
ROOSEVELT         37           45           47
HORSE MESA        94           94           93
MORMON FLAT       95           95           95
STEWARD MTN       92           94           92
  TOTAL SALT      48           54           56

HORSESHOE          0           11            0
BARTLETT          82           98           51
  TOTAL VERDE     51           65           31

  TOTAL SYSTEM    48           56           53


NEXT ISSUANCE DATE...

THIS WILL BE THE LAST DROUGHT INFORMATION STATEMENT UNTIL SUCH TIME
WHEN D3 EXTREME DROUGHT CONDITIONS MAY REEMERGE OVER THE LOCAL AREA.

&&

RELATED WEBSITES...

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION IS AVAILABLE AT THE FOLLOWING WEB SITES:

NWS FORECAST OFFICE PHOENIX...WEATHER.GOV/PHOENIX
NATIONAL INTEGRATED DROUGHT INFORMATION SYSTEM...DROUGHT.GOV
U.S. DROUGHT MONITOR...DROUGHT.UNL.EDU/DM/MONITOR.HTML
NWS CLIMATE PREDICTION CENTER...WWW.CPC.NCEP.NOAA.GOV
ARIZONA STATE CLIMATE OFFICE...AZCLIMATE.ASU.EDU
ARIZONA DEPARTMENT OF WATER RESOURCES DROUGHT PROGRAM...
  AZWATER.GOV/AZDWR/STATEWIDEPLANNING/DROUGHT
WESTERN REGIONAL CLIMATE CENTER...WRCC.DRI.EDU
USGS WATER RESOURCES OF THE UNITED STATES...WATER.USGS.GOV

ACKNOWLEDGMENTS...

INFORMATION INCLUDED IN THIS STATEMENT WAS COMPILED FROM VARIOUS
FEDERAL...STATE...AND LOCAL AGENCIES.

QUESTIONS OR COMMENTS...

IF YOU HAVE  ANY QUESTIONS OR COMMENTS...PLEASE CONTACT:

NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE - PHOENIX
PO BOX 52025
PHOENIX AZ 85072
602-275-0073
W-PSR.WEBMASTER@NOAA.GOV

$$






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