329  
AXUS71 KLWX 291437  
DGTLWX  
DCC001-MDC031-033-VAC013-059-510-610-311445-  
 
DROUGHT INFORMATION STATEMENT  
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE BALTIMORE MD/WASHINGTON DC  
1037 AM EDT THU MAR 29 2018  
   
..DROUGHT CONDITIONS STILL IMPROVING
 
 
SYNOPSIS...  
AS OF MARCH 27TH 2018, THE U.S. DROUGHT MONITOR SHOWS CONTINUED  
IMPROVEMENT DUE TO SHORT TERM RAINFALL. LONG TERM DEFICITS STILL  
EXIST WHICH CAUSE CONCERN FOR GROUNDWATER SUPPLIES; HOWEVER,  
EVERYTHING ELSE HAS RETURNED TO NORMAL.  
 
D1 (MODERATE DROUGHT) CONDITIONS ARE NOW DESIGNATED ONLY FOR A  
SMALL PORTION OF THE AREA, INCLUDING THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA,  
PARTS OF MONTGOMERY AND PRINCE GEORGES COUNTIES IN MARYLAND, AND  
PARTS OF FAIRFAX COUNTY IN VIRGINIA, AS WELL AS ALL OF ARLINGTON  
COUNTY AND THE CITIES OF FALLS CHURCH AND ALEXANDRIA.  
 
MOST OF THE REST OF THE BLUE RIDGE REGION, VIRGINIA PIEDMONT, AND  
I-95 CORRIDOR BETWEEN BALTIMORE AND WASHINGTON IS STILL  
DESIGNATED AS D0 (ABNORMALLY DRY) DUE TO THOSE LONG-TERM DEFICITS  
AND GROUNDWATER RECOVERY CONCERNS.  
 
BOTH THE D1 AND D0 DESIGNATED AREAS HAVE DECREASED SINCE THE LAST  
STATEMENT IN EARLY MARCH.  
 
SUMMARY OF IMPACTS...  
STATE AND LOCAL DECLARATIONS:  
A DROUGHT WATCH HAS BEEN DECLARED BY THE VIRGINIA DEPARTMENT OF  
ENVIRONMENTAL QUALITY (DEQ) FOR THE FOLLOWING COUNTIES: ALBEMARLE,  
NELSON, CULPEPER, GREENE, MADISON, ORANGE, RAPPAHANNOCK, AND  
SPOTSYLVANIA, AS WELL AS THOSE ON PRIVATE OR GROUNDWATER SUPPLY IN  
LOUDOUN, FAUQUIER, AND PRINCE WILLIAM COUNTIES. ALL OTHER DROUGHT  
WATCHES HAVE BEEN DISCONTINUED.  
 
THE MARYLAND DEPARTMENT OF THE ENVIRONMENT (MDE) HAS DISCONTINUED  
THE DROUGHT WATCH FOR ALL AREAS OF MARYLAND.  
 
HYDROLOGIC IMPACTS:  
SOIL MOISTURE HAS IMPROVED, AND IS NOW NEAR NORMAL IN MOST OF THE  
AREA, ALTHOUGH IT HAS FALLEN BACK BELOW NORMAL SOUTH OF WASHINGTON  
DC.  
 
GROUNDWATER LEVELS HAVE ALSO MADE A SIGNIFICANT RECOVERY, AND  
RECENT RAIN AND SNOWMELT WITH COOLER THAN NORMAL TEMPERATURES HAVE  
HELPED GROUNDWATER LEVELS TO CONTINUE TO INCREASE. EVEN THE  
GROUNDWATER WELL IN ORANGE COUNTY, VIRGINIA, WHICH HAS BEEN OUR  
BENCHMARK DURING THE FALL/WINTER DRY SPELL, IS NOW MORE THAN FIVE  
FEET HIGHER THAN IT WAS AT THIS TIME LAST YEAR, AND AT ITS HIGHEST  
LEVEL SINCE LATE SUMMER OF 2016.  
 
CLIMATE SUMMARY...  
ALTHOUGH THE FIRST HALF OF MARCH WAS QUITE DRY, UNSETTLED WEATHER  
AND THE LATE-SEASON SNOW EVENT HAVE HELPED RETURN THINGS CLOSER TO  
NORMAL AGAIN. THE PRECIPITATION DEFICITS ARE NOW ALL DISTANT --  
FROM THE FALL AND EARLY WINTER -- AND ARE MORE OF A CONCERN FOR  
GROUNDWATER THAN ANYTHING ELSE. THIS DOES MEAN THAT PROLONGED DRY  
SPELLS OF MORE THAN A WEEK DO CAUSE ALMOST IMMEDIATE DECREASES IN  
STREAMFLOW FOR STREAMS FED BY GROUNDWATER. HOWEVER, AS LONG AS WE  
DO NOT HAVE ANOTHER LONG DRY STRETCH, CONCERNS ARE DECREASING.  
 
PRECIPITATION/TEMPERATURE OUTLOOK...  
UNSETTLED WEATHER, WITH ABOVE NORMAL PRECIPITATION AND BELOW  
NORMAL TEMPERATURES, IS GENERALLY EXPECTED THROUGH AT LEAST MID-  
APRIL. THIS DOES NOT MEAN THERE WON'T BE DRY OR WARM PERIODS, BUT  
THE OVERALL PATTERN FAVORS CONTINUED COOLER AND WETTER THAN NORMAL  
CONDITIONS.  
 
THE 90 DAY OUTLOOK FROM THE CLIMATE PREDICTION CENTER  
FAVORS ABOVE NORMAL PRECIPITATION THROUGH THE END OF JUNE.  
 
HYDROLOGIC SUMMARY AND OUTLOOK...  
STREAMFLOWS ARE GENERALLY NEAR NORMAL TO SLIGHTLY BELOW NORMAL  
ACROSS THE AREA.  
 
STREAMFLOWS ARE LIKELY TO FLUCTUATE GIVEN THE UNSETTLED WEATHER  
PATTERN. WITH COOLER THAN NORMAL CONDITIONS, GROUNDWATER AND SOIL  
MOISTURE MAY SHOW IMPROVEMENT IN THE COMING WEEKS.  
 
THE DROUGHT OUTLOOK CALLS FOR CONTINUED IMPROVEMENT.  
 
NEXT ISSUANCE DATE...  
GIVEN THAT GROUNDWATER IS THE ONLY LINGERING IMPACT NOTED, AND  
ONLY A SMALL ZONE OF D1 (MODERATE DROUGHT) REMAINS, THIS WILL BE  
THE FINAL DROUGHT STATEMENT ISSUED FOR THIS DROUGHT EVENT. IF  
DROUGHT CONDITIONS BEGIN TO EXPAND IN AREA OR WORSEN AGAIN,  
ISSUANCE OF DROUGHT STATEMENTS WILL RESUME AT THAT TIME.  
 

 
 
RELATED WEB SITES...  
ADDITIONAL INFORMATION ON CURRENT DROUGHT CONDITIONS MAY BE FOUND  
AT THE FOLLOWING WEB ADDRESSES...  
 
US DROUGHT MONITOR...HTTP://WWW.DROUGHTMONITOR.UNL.EDU  
NWS DROUGHT PAGE...HTTP://WWW.NWS.NOAA.GOV/OM/DROUGHT  
CLIMATE PREDICTION CENTER (CPC)...HTTP://WWW.CPC.NCEP.NOAA.GOV  
 
ADDITIONAL RIVER INFORMATION...  
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE...HTTP://WATER.WEATHER.GOV  
US GEOLOGICAL SURVEY...HTTP://WATER.USGS.GOV  
 
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  
43858 WEATHER SERVICE ROAD  
STERLING, VA 20166  
PHONE: 703-996-2200  
LWXWEBMASTER@NOAA.GOV  
 

 
 
CLICK HERE TO GO TO PREVIOUS BULLETINS.

The Nexlab VA Page
The Nexlab MD Page
The Nexlab WV Page Main Text Page