Sprinkles, Light Rain Make Streets Glisten
Spotty rain and even some thunderstorms are expected in the Triangle over the next two days. But, the area needs more than that to break the drought.
"You get out there see a few reflections (in the streets)," WRAL Meteorologist Mike Moss said. "We had some rain. I know when I was coming in, I was getting enough to have to use my windshield wipers a little bit."
Overnight, a weak disturbance – with moisture and warmer air – from the south flowed in over cooler, dry air near the surface, producing sprinkles and patches of light rain. Raleigh-Durham International Airport recorded one-hundredth of rain after midnight Saturday.
"It doesn’t look like a lot of us are going to see very much rain today. Most areas (are) not seeing anything real substantial in terms of a lot of rain coming down in any kind of a short time," Moss said.
"There’ll be some dry periods, there’ll be other times it’s just kind of drizzling a little bit, and then on occasion, we’ll have a patch of light rain drift through and then drift out of the area."
An upper-level low pressure system coming out of Mexico, however, could change that situation on Monday.
"Tomorrow, we'll have more of a showery kind of day. It'll be dry periods interrupted by an occasional shower passing through," Moss said.
"Late tomorrow or tomorrow evening, there could be a couple thunderstorms, as well. One or two of those could end up being intense."
The rain and storms on Sunday and Monday could do a little bit to help relieve the statewide drought, Moss said. On Saturday, he predicted accumulations between 2 and 4 tenths of an inch.
"By the time you add all of that up, maybe we'll get some helpful rain around this area in the next 36 or 48 hours before we dry back up," Moss said. "So it's some good news in getting some rain in the area."
The U.S. Drought Monitor on Friday showed the drought intensifying and spreading, with 56 counties under exceptional drought – up from 25 counties the week before. On Sunday, RDU had a year-to-date rainfall deficit of 8.19 inches, up 2 tenths of an inch from the day before.
Although the Triangle "can use any rain we can get," Moss said what is really needed to break the drought is a consistent pattern of fronts bringing rain across the state.
"It would be nice to get more steady, widespread rain around the area," Moss said.