Despite the "May Miracle" and record daily rainfall totals in some areas, the season to date precipitation total in Downtown L.A. is still close to 9" BELOW average. A total of 0.71" fell at USC where the official records are kept for the city. The early May rain did help to put out the wildfires that were burning across the region and added much needed moisture to the hillsides.
However, this is the time of year when high pressure begins to dominate our weather and the storm track shifts well north. Very little rain falls here in southern California from late spring through the summer months. This is typical of a Mediterranean climate. The drought monitor on the left shows that southern California is already experiencing "moderate drought" conditions due to our dry winter. The majority of the rest of the state is experiencing moderate to severe drought conditions.
More troubling, is our state's snow pack. According to the California Department of Water Resources, the water content of the state's snow pack is just 17% of average. The majority of the water that we use here in southern California comes from the melting snow off the Sierra Nevada. The good news is that we are not "officially" in a drought. Due to a wet season last year and strong storms in November and December, key storage reservoirs are still in good shape.
The seasonal drought outlook on the left shows "persistence" through July 31st. Little change in the dry pattern and conditions are expected. This means that the threat of more wildfires exists. The governor or state climatologist will officially declare a "drought" if needed.
Hopefully we will see another "May Miracle" before the long dry summer sets in! Check my forecasts every Monday through Friday morning starting at 4:30am on FOX 11 or right here on myfoxla.com.
FOX 11 Certified Broadcast Meteorologist
Photo Credits-Graphics: NOAA, US Drought Monitor
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