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Above average August rainfall keeps reservoirs steady

Posted by on September 8, 2016


Rainfall in all three reservoir sub-basins exceeded normal in August. While no single event provided the basin with massive runoff, the steady and consistent small rain events kept the reservoirs at a relatively flat level.

Leading the charge: Hartwell with observed rainfall and Russell with percentage.

The Hartwell sub-basin took in 6.7 inches of rain, or 134.2 percent of the monthly average for August. This kept the reservoir level rather steady. Whereas in August Hartwell typically drops nearly 1.5 feet, last month it declined less than 1 foot between the first and last days of the month.August Rainfall

Russell, being the smallest sub-basin, had a really good August. It received 1.5 times its usual amount of August rain and the second highest amount at 5.5 inches, compared to an average of 3.66 inches. As usual, because of its original design and purpose, Russell Lake, also known as “Sir Russell the Steady” kept a flat level but remained above its August average level, though only slightly.

Thurmond’s sub-basin fared better than average but not as well as the others. Its 4.27 inches of rain beat its average of 3.71 inches and gave the basin 115 percent of August average. This was only enough to keep the reservoir flat all month with a beginning and ending level less than three-quarters of an inch apart.

While we celebrate Tropical Storm Hermine did not cause massive damage to our basin, it also did not deposit significant rain into any of the sub-basins. We have just entered the most active Atlantic hurricane time, so the Savannah District remains alert to fulfill our mission of flood risk reduction. All the devastating storms can just remain out in the ocean but we welcome gentle rainmakers to visit our area.

Stay safe. Stay alert to changing weather patterns. Wear your life jacket whenever you are in, on or near the water. Most of all, enjoy the reservoirs.

~ Billy Birdwell, Corporate Communications Office

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