Tooele Transcript Bulletin – News in Tooele, Utah

May 7, 2015
Rainy and snowy April stops deeper slide into drought

Tooele came within tenths of an inch of normal precipitation last month, ending a winter-long dry spell that saw substantially less moisture than normal.

But county-wide water totals remain well below normal.

Stormy weather later in the month brought Tooele 2.42 inches of precipitation, just .07 inches shy of normal for what is generally the rainiest month of the year, according to Ned Bevan, a cooperative weather observer with the National Weather Service.

But due to significant water shortfalls over the winter, the area remains some 6.5 inches behind the normal running total for the water year, which begins in October.

April temperatures remained within normal ranges, averaging daily highs of 64 degrees and lows of 37 degrees. Tooele normally sees highs around 62.5 and lows of roughly 40 degrees in April, according to the Western Regional Climate Center.

There is currently no snowpack present at any of the county’s three active Snotel sites, according to Snotel sensors.

Due to the prolonged, abnormally dry conditions in Tooele County, the U.S. Drought Monitor has declared most of the county to be experiencing an extreme or stage D3 drought. The U.S. Drought Monitor rates drought conditions on a scale of D0-D4.

Some portions of the western and easternmost parts of Tooele County remain at a stage D2 or severe drought, but overall Tooele remains the most drought-stricken county in Utah, according to the monitor.

But there may be good news to come. According to the National Weather Service’s Climate Prediction Center, Tooele can expect to see above average temperatures — but also above average precipitation — for the next three months.

Tooele County usually receives just under two inches of precipitation during that time and averages temperatures between 48-72 degrees, according to the Western Regional Climate Center. 

Emma Penrod

Staff Writer at Tooele Transcript Bulletin
Emma Penrod is a staff writer for the Tooele Transcript-Bulletin and covers Tooele City government, religion, health, the environment, ethnic issues and public infrastructure. A Tooele native, Penrod graduated from Tooele High School in 2010. She holds an associates degree from Utah State University, and a bachelor’s degree in communications from Brigham Young University. She worked for the newspaper as a high school intern starting in 2008. In 2010 she began working full-time in the newsroom until she left for college later that year. While at BYU, Penrod worked as a writer and editor for a small health magazine in Utah County. She interned with The Riverdale Press, a community newspaper in the Bronx, NY and with the Deseret News. She is also the author of two non-fiction books.

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