NEW: Just how bad is the drought in Oklahoma County and the state?
NEW: The U.S. Drought Monitor report released Thursday shows the northwest half of Oklahoma County in severe drought and the southwest half in moderate drought.
Also 13.54 percent of Oklahoma – southwestern Oklahoma through western Oklahoma and into portions of the Panhandle - is in exceptional drought, the worst category. That is up 2.4 three months ago.
|3 Months Ago||1/7/2014||50.84||49.16||38.17||18.99||4.84||2.40|
|Start of Calendar Year||12/31/2013||50.84||49.16||38.17||18.99||4.84||2.40|
|Start of Water Year||10/1/2013||21.74||78.26||43.00||17.62||4.42||1.45|
|One Year Ago||4/9/2013||0.70||99.30||85.01||61.00||36.44||8.56|
- D0 – Abnormally Dry
- D1 – Moderate Drought
- D2 – Severe Drought
- D3 – Extreme Drought
- D4 – Exceptional Drought
The Drought Monitor focuses on broad-scale conditions. Local conditions may vary. See accompanying text summary for forecast statements.
- Brian Fuchs, National Drought Mitigation Center
It’s no surprise that Oklahoma can run hot (or at least warm) and cold during the same time of year.
The Oklahoma City forecast for today is a high near 85, according to the National Weather Service, Norman. Windy, with a south southwest wind 16 to 25 mph becoming west northwest in the afternoon. Winds could gust as high as 36 mph.
Now look back to this story from a year ago:
From April 10, 2013
By Adam Kemp
A freak blast of cold weather on Wednesday left Mary Lu Kraft’s front yard looking like an April tornado had blown through instead of an ice storm.
Downed tree limbs covered in ice and frozen hedges surrounded Kraft’s house in Quail Creek. She‘s lived in the area for nearly 30 years and said she has learned that just when you think spring is around the corner, Mother Nature usually has a few surprises left.
“I was smart and waited to plant my spring flowers this year,” Kraft said. “Not much you can do when you’re at the hands of Mother Nature. We go from picnic weather one day to coat and hats the next.”
More than 1.5 inches of rain combined with freezing temperatures produced hazardous results for trees and power lines across the metro area. More than 4,200 customers were still without power Wednesday evening according to Oklahoma Gas and Electric. More than 1,000 customers were without power in Edmond earlier in the day, but Edmond Electric had restored everyone’s service.
Schools throughout the northwest part of the state closed Wednesday and many evening church services and night classes were canceled too.
Lara O’Leary from Emergency Medical Services Authority said only a few people had been transported to hospitals due to weather-related injuries. One man was treated for hypothermia after his scooter got stuck and he was trapped outside.
With ice hanging precariously from trees and power lines, O’Leary said people should take caution and watch out for the falling, frozen bits.
“We would advise that folks drive in the center lane and away from the power lines on the sides of the road and away from the falling ice,” she said. “They would also be wise to do a slip check with their foot before they step out the door in the morning.”
Neil Hartley and his home in Nichols Hills also got the brunt of the weather as the accumulating ice proved to be too much for the tree in the front yard, splitting a large limb from the trunk that came to rest across his driveway.
Despite the mess, Hartley said he’s grateful for the rain that came with the ice.
“We’ll have to clean up, but at least we got some rain,” Hartley said. “I’d take some more rain even if it meant colder temps for awhile. The more rain the better.”