Midwest Region correspondent and buddy Josh Darr sent me the link to the March 2009 U.S. Climate Summary that just came out today from the National Climatic Data Center. Looks like the Northeastern United States is off to the driest start of a year on record - in 115 years of record keeping. I'm uncomfortable seeing the drought expanding across so much of the country, but hopefully the active jet stream and a feed of tropical moisture from the Gulf of Mexico will put a dent in it during the coming couple of weeks. Below is the excerpt from the report (the full article can be linked here).
- This was the 42nd wettest March in the 1895—2009 record. An average of 2.51 inches (63.8 mm) of precipitation fell across the contiguous U.S. this month, which is 0.1 inch (2.8 mm) above average.
- On a regional level, March was above normal for the East North Central region. In contrast, the Northeast and Southwest were drier than normal. Additional information on each regional time series can be found on the March 2009 graphics page.
- Three states (Delaware, Maryland, and New Jersey) experienced their driest year-to-date period ever. In neighboring states, Pennsylvania recorded its second driest year-to-date period and Massachusetts and West Virgnia experienced their fourth and fifth driest, respectively. The below-normal precipitation averages led to the driest ever start to the year for the Northeast region. All year-to-date analyses are based on 115 years worth of data.