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Rare ‘severe drought’ develops over Southside

Little improvement expected in December
Published: Dec. 2, 2021 at 5:16 PM EST|Updated: Dec. 2, 2021 at 5:53 PM EST
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SOUTHSIDE, Va. (WDBJ) - The faucet has turned off over Southside and many areas east of the Blue Ridge this fall. A historically dry November significantly worsened conditions, especially over parts of Pittsylvania, Halifax, and Charlotte counties.

In the latest drought monitor issued every Thursday, moderate to severe drought conditions were officially reported over much of Southside.

Brushfires have already started popping up over the region, signaling the worsening conditions.

In a report issued Thursday on the drought, NWS Blacksburg said precipitation during the two month period between October and November varied between 20 and 30 percent of normal across an area that never fully recovered from dryness observed during the summer months.

A major lack of rainfall in the fall months in South Boston and many other towns in the region.
A major lack of rainfall in the fall months in South Boston and many other towns in the region.(WDBJ Weather)

Severe droughts are very uncommon for our region. The last severe drought occurred in October of 2019. Prior to that, our region hasn’t experienced a severe drought since November of 2008.

During severe droughts, pasture supplies are often low, fires increase, and mandatory water restrictions may be put in place.

Given that December is one of the drier months of the year, drought conditions may not improve any time soon.

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