Current Drought Conditions
Even if there is no formal burn ban in effect for your area, it is still important to be vigilant about fire usage. Avoid open flames near dry vegetation, and assure all coals and embers are fully extinguished.
The Keetch-Byram Drought Index is a drought statistic specifically designed to assess fire danger.
After nearly 5 years of significant water restrictions, the North Texas Municipal Water District (NTMWD) began allowing twice-per-week watering on May 1. Sprinklers and other irrigation systems are still be prohibited between 10 am and 6 pm (April 1 to October 31). The NTMWD serves 1.6 million customers east and northeast of the city of Dallas.
In April 2014, the Fort Worth City Council made permanent its twice-per-week limit on landscape watering. Only hand watering is allowed between 10 am and 6 pm. Arlington, also within the Tarrant Regional Water District (TRWD) service area, has similar restrictions but is not ready to make them permanent. Dallas has made permanent its twice-per-week limit, but the restriction on daytime watering is limited to the warm season (April 1 to October 31). Since water restrictions vary considerably throughout the Metroplex, residents should keep informed with the current guidelines from their municipality or water utility provider.
Although the summer outlook favors below normal temperatures and above normal precipitation, it's important to iterate that the outlooks below are based on 3-month averages. In other words, bouts of hot weather will likely still occur even if the summer is mild overall.
Temperature and Precipitation Outlooks for Summer
The temperature outlook presents the likelihood the 3-month average temperature will differ significantly from normal. Orange areas denote parts of the country with an increased chance of being in the warmest tercile, or the warmest third of historical data. Similarly, blue areas denote parts of the country that are projected to have an elevated chance of being in the coolest tercile. Where neither color is shaded, there is no strong signal to determine an accentuated chance of being in either the warmest or coolest tercile. This does not mean that near normal temperatures are expected, but simply that the period is just as likely to be in the warmest tercile as it is to be in the coolest tercile.
The precipitation outlook presents the likelihood of receiving a precipitation total that differs significantly from normal. Green areas denote parts of the country with an increased chance of being in the wettest tercile, or the wettest third of historical data. Similarly, brown areas denote parts of the country that are projected to have an elevated chance of being in the driest tercile. Where neither color is shaded, there is no strong signal to determine an accentuated chance of being in either the driest or wettest tercile. This does not mean that near normal precipitation is expected, but simply that the period is just as likely to be in the wettest tercile as it is to be in the driest tercile.
With El Niño conditions expected to strengthen this year, projections for above normal precipitation will prevail into 2016. As a result, drought conditions are unlikely to return the next several months.
Precipitation Outlooks for the Forthcoming Cold Season