South Carolina drought status changes
According to both the South Carolina Drought Response Committee and the United States Drought Monitor, drought conditions across the Midlands are getting worse.
The SCDRC held a conference call Monday where it was decided to upgrade the drought status for 15 counties statewide.
The status was upgraded from normal drought status to incipient, which is known as the first stage of drought.
While the SCDRC noted that no major drought impacts have been reported, the status change is significant for both public safety and financial prosperity.
"When you have dry conditions, it’s compounding the potential for brush fires," says SkyWACH Meteorologist Justin Kier.
"Low humidity and gusty winds combined with dry forest fuels, like pine stray or leaves, can lead to problematic situations.
Unfortunately we’re entering into the time of year when wild fires peak in our area."
The South Carolina Forestry Commission mentioned their concern on the conference call by highlighting the higher brush fire potential and the potential for poor seeding survival during the tree planting season.
The forecast La Nina pattern for the winter generally means warmer and drier conditions for the Midlands.
One of the tools used by meteorologists and climatologists, known as the U.S. Drought Monitor, lists every county in the Midlands except Clarendon County in the first stage of drought.