NOAA Predicts Continued Flooding Problems

NOAA Predicts Continued Flooding Problems

March 28, 2008 

National Outlooks

Spring Floods

Above-normal flood potential is evident in much of the Mississippi River basin, the Ohio River basin, the lower Missouri River basin, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, most of New York, all of New England, and portions of the West, including Colorado and Idaho.

See CropWatch Weather for soil temperature updates and other data for irrigation management as it becomes available during the crop production season.
Heavy winter snow combined with recent rain indicates parts of Wisconsin and Illinois should see minor to moderate flooding, with as much as a 20% to 30% chance of major flooding on some rivers in southern Wisconsin and northern Illinois.

Locations in the mountains of Colorado and Idaho have 150% to 200% of average water contained in snowpack leading to a higher than normal flood potential.

Snowfall has been normal or above normal across most of the West this winter; however, preexisting dryness in many areas will prevent most flooding in this region. Runoff from snow pack is expected to significantly improve stream flows compared to last year for the West.

Spring Drought

The drought outlook indicates continued general improvement in the Southeast, although some reservoirs are unlikely to recover before summer. Winter precipitation chipped away at both the western and southeastern drought. On the U.S. Drought Monitor, extreme drought coverage dropped from nearly 50% in mid-December to less than 20% in the Southeast for March.

Drought is expected to continue in parts of the southern Plains despite some recent heavy rain. Parts of Texas received less than 25% of normal rainfall in the winter, leading 165 counties to enact burn bans by mid-March. Seasonal forecasts for warmth and dryness suggest drought will expand northward and westward this spring.

The full 2008 National Hydrologic Assessment is posted at http://www.nws.noaa.gov/oh/hic/nho/

March 20, 2008 News Release
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration