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Recent Rains in Central and Western Kansas but Areas Remain Under Drought Conditions

HAYS, Kan. (KNS/HPPR) – The rain that fell over parts of western and central Kansas last week brought much-needed precipitation to some extremely dry areas. But the Kansas News Service reports those recent rains are not enough to end drought conditions.

Twenty-five percent of Kansas is now experiencing extreme or exceptional drought. And while recent rains were a welcome relief, they didn’t do much to make up for long-term precipitation deficits.

Some parts of western Kansas are still seven or eight inches below their historical year-to-date average. Curtis Riganti, a climatologist with the National Drought Mitigation Center, says meager rainfall totals over the past year in western Kansas make this one of the driest years in the past century.

“Out of 100 years, you’d only expect two of those to be that dry… So by definition, a very rare event,” he said.

Riganti says the hot, dry weather is likely to continue as forecasts point toward more high temperatures and little rainfall through the month of August.