Drought worsens

Additional parts of metro Atlanta areas were experiencing an extreme drought as of Thursday. The pink area indicates exceptional drought. (Credit: Channel 2 Action News)
Additional parts of metro Atlanta areas were experiencing an extreme drought as of Thursday. The pink area indicates exceptional drought. (Credit: Channel 2 Action News)

The state’s drought alerts:

Level 1: Requires public water systems to educate customers about conditions and encourages conservation.

Level 2: Limits outdoor watering to two days a week on an odd-even schedule. Even-numbered addresses may water Wednesdays and Saturdays (4 p.m. to 10 a.m.); odd-numbered addresses may water Thursdays and Sundays (4 p.m. to 10 a.m.). No water for outdoor fountains, carwashes or power washing of homes.

Level 3: Prohibits all outdoor irrigation of landscapes. Food gardens may be watered between 4 p.m. and 10 a.m. (Soaker hoses and drip irrigation may be used any time.) Hand watering allowed during designated hours. Golf course irrigation limited.

Source: Environmental Protection Division.

Additional parts of metro Atlanta entered an “extreme drought” this week, according to Channel 2 Action News.

And it’s even worse in northwest Georgia, which is facing an “exceptional” drought, the television station reported.

“Some of the folks may have to sell off some livestock,” Channel 2 meteorologist Karen Minton said. “There are fires that have occurred there. The streams are getting low. We really are in desperate need of some rain.”

Unfortunately, there is little to no rain expected over the next five to seven days, Minton said.

Drought designations are based on data from the U.S. Drought Monitor. “Abnormally dry” is the least severe classification. “Exceptional” is the most severe category.

Conditions in Georgia as a whole are so dry that state officials recently issued the year's first drought alert to conserve water.

Since that Sept. 9 alert, some areas south and east of Atlanta have entered an "extreme" drought, the second most severe classification.

Lake Lanier, which is Atlanta’s source of drinking water, stayed at about the same level this week, 1,064.40 feet, as it did last week. The full pool level for summer is 1,071 feet.

Rainfall last seven days: 0.06

Rainfall this month: 3.43

Rainfall deficit for the year: 5.59

Rainfall surplus since Sept. 1: 3.43

Values in inches as of end of day Thursday