Our Community. Our Nation. Our World.
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00
0:00
Available On Air Stations

This Past May Was Wettest Month On Record, Says NOAA

Tex Toler watches the Llano River rise Friday in Llano, Texas, after another round of heavy rains that have brought flooding and deaths to the state.
Tex Toler watches the Llano River rise Friday in Llano, Texas, after another round of heavy rains that have brought flooding and deaths to the state.

A lot of news came out of the torrential rains that fell across the United States in May.

Now, we have hard numbers that put that in perspective: According to NOAA's National Centers for Environmental Information this past May was wettest month in 121 years of recorded history.

On average, the contiguous U.S. received 4.36 inches of rain. That's 1.45 inches above average and also the wettest May on record.

"For the spring season, the contiguous U.S. precipitation total was 9.33 inches, 1.39 inches above average, and the 11th wettest on record," the NCEI reports.

Here's a map that shows how much of the United States received above-average rainfall:

A map showing how rainfall during May 2015 stacks up to the historical average.
/ NOAA
A map showing how rainfall during May 2015 stacks up to the historical average.

The Palm Beach Post has the silver lining:

"Last week, the U.S. Drought Monitor report showed 24.6 percent of the U.S. was in drought, down from 37.4 percent at the end of April. The current drought footprint is the smallest since February 2011."

Copyright 2020 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.