Mid-July drought update

Abnormally dry conditions continue in Central New York.

Posted: Jul 16, 2020 8:48 PM
Updated: Jul 17, 2020 9:14 AM

The story of the summer so far has been the heat and dry weather. Rainfall in June was 25% of average for most areas. Griffiss was the 10th driest on record for the month of June, with only 1.35" (most of that fell in the last week). We saw a four day heat wave (temperatures in the 90s) in the middle of the month.

This combination of conditions has lead to minor drought conditions in the middle and end of June.  The latest map from NOAA continues the abnormally dry conditions for our area. The dought has turned severe in Northern New York. This region has been hit particularly hard.   

What exactly does this mean?  In addition to lawns turning brown, the water table is much lower than average.  That means small streams and creeks run dry, with low water levels for rivers, lakes, and ponds.  Some wells also run dry.  It's been a long time since our area had a severe drought.

Game changing rain last weekend

The most severe part of the dry spell was in late June. Since then, we've had some rainfall events, not enough to improve the drought, but enough to keep it from getting worse. The game changing rain happened over the weekend. Our entire area saw a soaking 2-4" of rainfall. This made a significant dent in the low water levels. While we could still use more rainfall, this was a huge step in the right direction.

Going forward

The weather pattern turns hot again this weekend, with temperatures back in the 90s. However, beyond the weekend, we have several chances for rain. The overall pattern favors wet weather in the northeast.

New York Coronavirus Cases

County data is updated nightly.

Cases: 2108950

Reported Deaths: 53539
CountyCasesDeaths
Kings28046810450
Queens2771519953
Suffolk2009593399
Nassau1835783174
Bronx1833786586
New York1381774498
Westchester1296242288
Erie895571805
Richmond749311840
Monroe689011110
Orange48294843
Rockland46930963
Onondaga38903677
Dutchess29467445
Albany24689356
Oneida22601513
Niagara20030372
Broome18612366
Saratoga15357168
Ulster13903257
Schenectady13192205
Rensselaer11223142
Putnam1060492
Chautauqua8949145
Chemung7757135
Oswego761892
Ontario740393
Steuben6950144
Sullivan667075
St. Lawrence662996
Cayuga633692
Jefferson612868
Wayne577870
Cattaraugus571991
Genesee5435124
Herkimer5182109
Clinton483533
Madison456089
Livingston451860
Fulton442091
Tompkins434652
Montgomery4254125
Columbia4062104
Cortland392462
Tioga382763
Warren365857
Wyoming358153
Allegany355587
Chenango349576
Otsego346047
Greene340279
Washington315955
Orleans311883
Lewis280536
Franklin256112
Delaware237938
Seneca200956
Schoharie169217
Essex159326
Yates117826
Schuyler107114
Hamilton3132
Unassigned9212
Out of NY0248
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