Maine’s Drought Task Force says drought conditions have worsened considerably since early September, moving farther north and east of the state.
“We’re not yet in a state of emergency, but if conditions continue to worsen, we may have to consider that,” said Bruce Fitzgerald, Director of Maine Emergency Management Agency. “Although conservation measures are voluntary at this point, it’s important that everyone take steps to conserve to help prevent worsening conditions.”
The National Weather Service reported that all counties in Maine experienced a deficit of rainfall since April except Aroostook that saw positive levels in the past month.
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“The drought is expected to continue and expand,” said Tom Hawley of the National Weather Service in Gray. “September rainfall was well below average for the entire state. Many locations in southern Maine received less than one inch for the month.”
The forecast predicts drier and warmer than normal weather for October and beyond.
The U.S. Geological Survey reported that groundwater levels for most of Maine are at the lowest 15 percent of all data gathered over the last 11-35 years.
Restrictions have been placed on water usage in some areas but all citizens are encouraged take steps to use water wisely, including taking shorter showers, not letting the water run while brushing or shaving, fixing leaky faucets, running full loads of laundry and dishes, avoiding peeling vegetables under running water, discontinuing outdoor watering, unless absolutely necessary and to use a bucket when washing cars.
More information on water conservation is available at Maineprepares.com.
Those experiencing dry wells or other drought-related problems should call 2-1-1 or go to 211maine.org