NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – Drought conditions have been present in areas of Middle Tennessee throughout the summer. While recent rain events have brought some relief, there are still concerns about the drought as fall approaches.
James LaRosa, the Service Hydrologist for the National Weather Service in Nashville, said areas west of I-65 are still dealing with the impacts of this summer’s dry weather.
“There are a few locations that are still seeing some abnormally dry to moderate drought, mainly west Tennessee, and parts of Middle Tennessee along the Tennessee River,” he explained.
The Climate Prediction Center has predicted drier than average conditions for the fall months, but rain will likely pick up in the winter.
“Once the rainy season picks up, you know, normal rainfall for December, January, February into the early spring. And that should pretty much take care of any lingering drought concerns,” said LaRosa.
So, what’s needed to get rid of these drought conditions completely? The answer is rain, of course, but too much rain is not a good thing, especially after a drought.
What’s needed is light to moderate steady rainfall.
“If it’s dry, the soil moisture is dry, when you get, you know, light to moderate rain showers, that soil will soak that up just fine. We see a lot of rainfall runoff and flooding concerns when we see the intense rainfall rates or training thunderstorms with rain over the same area where the rainfall rate kind of exceeds the soil infant infiltration rate,” said LaRosa.
Tropical systems can also bring heavy downpours to Middle Tennessee during the fall, and while that would help alleviate drought conditions, it may also lead to flooding.