Sunday’s rainfall topped 2 inches in some areas, but drought still on
However, the heaviest downpours were confined to eastern areas least affected by drought and least at risk of wildfires.
One rain gauge in Palm Beach County measured 2.81 inches of precipitation for the 24 hours that ended at 7 a.m. Monday, the South Florida Water Management District said.
Other readings from gauges in eastern and central parts of the county included 2.7, 2.64 and 2.61 inches.
“We did have some significant rainfall in Palm Beach County,” said Randy Smith, spokesman at the Water Management District.
“There are still rainfall deficits, but the timing was critical.” Even after a wet weekend, much of the region remains 7 inches to 9 inches below typical dry-season rainfall totals, Smith said.
Inland parts of Palm Beach County are in “moderate drought” or “severe drought.” In contrast to the deluge on the coast, Belle Glade, Pahokee and nearby areas received only a few drops of rain on Sunday.
The South Florida Water Management District on April 13 issued a water shortage order, a warning that mandatory cuts might be next.
Rick Scott said a 5,500-acre wildfire in Collier County was 50 percent contained.
However, Zierden noted that the heaviest rainfall hit coastal areas, not the regions with the greatest risk of wildfires.
For the period from Oct. 1 through April 12, a rain gauge at Palm Beach International Airport showed just 13.91 inches of rain, 11.62 inches below normal dry-season rainfall, the National Weather Service said.