National Weather Service United States Department of Commerce
Drought Information Statement
National Weather Service Columbia SC
405 PM EDT Wed Apr 11 2018

...Drought Worsening Across the Eastern Midlands...


Rainfall for the past 30 days ending on April 11th ranged from 2
to 4 inches across the Midlands and Central Savannah River Area.
The below average rainfall combined with temperatures warming as
the region heads into Spring have contributed to the gradually
worsening conditions.

See for more details.

                     ...Summary of Impacts...

On April 11 2018...the South Carolina Forestry Commission began
to show that some areas of the state are becoming drier. Based on
the Keetch-Byram Drought Index indicated that most of the state
had values less than 200. However...the eastern Midlands and
Lowcountry indicated values increasing up to 400.

The United State Corps of Engineers will continue to release
approximately 4200 cubic feet per second...cfs...from Lake
Thurmond for the next few days before cutting back to 3800 cfs by
April 18th.

Conditions have worsened gradually over the past couple of months
across the Midlands and Central Savannah River Area. The drought
has increased with all of the Midlands and CSRA in some type of
drought declaration. Only Lancaster County in the northern
Midlands remain out of drought. The remaining portion of the area
ranges from D0, abnormally dry to D2, severe drought.

Go to for more details on the drought across
Georgia and South Carolina.

                    ...Soil Moisture Conditions...

The Crop Moisture Index as of April 7 2018, shows no indication of
drought across the region. However, this is a short term drought
indicator and does not account for the past several months of
below normal rainfall.


Here is a breakdown of the current drought conditions across the
Midlands and Central Savannah River Area.

D2...Severe Drought covered the southern and eastern portion of
Orangeburg county, nearly all of Bamberg county and just a small
portion of southern Barnwell county.

D1...Moderate Drought covered mainly the counties that lie along
and south of I-20. This includes: Lee; Sumter; Clarendon; Calhoun;
Richland; Lexington; western Orangeburg; most of Barnwell county;
most of Aiken county; Richmond county; and Burke county.

D0...Abnormally Dry conditions covered the western Midlands and
northern half of the CSRA. This includes the counties of
McDuffie. Columbia, Lincoln, McCormick, Edgefield, Saluda,
Newberry, Fairfield and Kershaw.

go to for more details.

              ...South Carolina Drought Committee...

The South Carolina Drought Response Committee met on November 27
2017. A meeting will be upcoming on the 25th of April. Most of the
Upstate and Coastal Areas were not in any drought at the time. The
only areas in drought were across the central portion of the
Palmetto State.

                  ...Ground Water Conditions...

The ground water network maintained by the United States
Geological Survey was used in this report.

A higher number means a lower water table and therefore less
groundwater. A minus difference indicates less ground water.

Aiken County - 430 well near Jackson
March       29 2018 163.04 feet
April       11 2018 163.48 feet
Difference      Minus 0.44 feet

McCormick County - 52 Baker Creek State Park well
March       29 2018  42.19 feet
April       11 2018  42.72 feet
Difference      Minus 0.53 feet

Sumter County - 355 well near Dalzell
March       29 2018  12.52 feet
April       11 2018  12.71 feet
Difference      Minus 0.19 feet

Kershaw County - 433 near Liberty Hill
March       29 2018   55.37 feet
April 11    11 2018   55.44 feet
Difference      Minus  0.07 feet

Lancaster County - 498 well Lancaster County Airport
March       29 2018   32.88 feet
April       11 2018   32.81 feet
Difference       Plus  0.07 feet

Richmond county - 30AA04 well near McBean
March       29 2018  131.65 feet
April       11 2018  131.68 feet
Difference       Minus 0.03 feet

               ...River and Streamflow Conditions...

Looking at the 14 day stream flow average compared to
historical streamflows for April 11 2018 shows most of
flows are in the Much Below Normal to Below Normal

Data source...United States Geological Survey.


Some of the reservoirs showed increases and decreases in pool
elevation during the period. The most significant changes were
on Lake Greenwood and Lake Russell.

Lake Russell                              Lake Thurmond
March    29 2018 474.35 feet               327.40 feet
April    11 2018 474.63 feet               327.12 feet
Difference  plus   0.28 feet           minus 0.28 feet

Lake Greenwood                            Lake Murray
March    29 2018 438.16 feet               357.98 feet
April    11 2018 438.93 feet               358.11 feet
Difference  plus   0.77 feet           plus  0.13 feet

Lake Marion near Pineville                Lake Wateree
March    29 2018  75.30 feet                97.60 feet
April    11 2018  75.20 feet                97.43 feet
Difference  minus  0.10 feet           minus 0.17 feet

Note...lake levels are based on recent rainfall...releases and
local power demands.

Lake Russell was just under the rule curve for early April and
Lake Thurmond was below the rule curve for early April. Lake
Russell is around 1 foot below the rule curve. Lake Thurmond is
around 3 feet below the rule curve for this time of year.

Data for this segment was gathered from the United States
Geological Survey...the United States Army Corp of Engineers
and Duke Energy.

                    ...Climate Summary...

The precipitation totals ending March 10 2017

Station    Precipitation     Departure from Normal   Percent of

Columbia SC  7.33  inches      minus 4.50 inches      62 percent
Augusta GA   7.41  inches      minus 5.66 inches      57 percent

              ...Precipitation and Temperature Outlook...

Near term...through April 15...a cold front will move across the
area on Sunday. This will produce showers and thunderstorms across
the region. Rainfall amounts are expected to be around 1 inch.

Please see the gridded forecasts for the chance of rain over the
next 7 days at

The 8 to 14 day outlook for the period April 18 to 24 calls for a
33 to 40 percent chance of above normal temperatures with a 33 to
40 percent chance of above normal precipitation.

The 30-day outlook for April 2018 indicates equal chances for
above, below and normal temperatures along with a 33 to 40 percent
chance of above normal precipitation.

The 3-month outlook for April, May and June calls for a 50 to 60
percent chance of above normal temperatures along with equal
chances for above, below and normal precipitation.

Go to the climate prediction center web page at in lower case letters for more details and
the latest outlooks.

               ...Hydrologic Summary and Outlook...

The outlook call for warmer than normal temperatures along with
a slightly better chance for above normal rainfall. Any
improvement of the drought will highly dependent on rainfall
through the remainder of Spring.

A continued trend of below normal rainfall will worsen and spread
the drought across the Midlands and Central Savannah River Area.

NEXT ISSUANCE DATE... This product will be updated on May 4th 2018
or sooner if necessary in response to significant changes in

go to for more details.

Additional information on current drought conditions may be found
at the following web addresses...

US Drought Monitor...
NOAA Drought Page...
Climate Prediction Center (CPC)...
Columbia Drought Page...
U.S. Drought Monitor...
SC Drought Page...

National Weather Service...
US Geological Survey...
US Army Corps of Engineers...

The United States Drought Monitor is a multi-agency effort
involving NOAA/National Weather Service...the 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...Duke Energy...
Santee Cooper...South Carolina Electric and Gas...USAC and the

If you have questions or comments about this Drought Information
Statement...please contact...

National Weather Service
2909 Aviation Way
West Columbia SC 29170