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Record Dry May Possible For Omaha

Are there any rain chances in the next few days?
Downtown Omaha, Nebraska Skyline
Posted at 4:45 PM, May 26, 2023

To say that May has been dry for the Omaha metro is an understatement, it has been bone dry! With the exception of a few sprinkles throughout the month, Eppley Airfield has picked up on such little rain that we are approaching record dry levels, and it's not even close.

As of May 26, Omaha Eppley picked up 0.17" of rainfall for the entire month. We typically see more than that in a single thunderstorm. The data same from 3 days, Friday May 5 with 0.03", Thursday May 11 with 0.11", and Wednesday May 24 with 0.03".

Almanac Calendar w Rain.png
A look at rainfall at Eppley for May 2023.

Looking at the 5 driest Mays on record for Eppley, they go:
1. 2023 (0.17")
2. 1989 (0.55")
3. 1925 (0.55")
4. 1948 (0.56")
5. 1934 (0.60")

Some spots in the metro, such as Fremont, Millard, and Bennington saw slightly higher rainfall for May but still well-below average.

May caps off an already dry Spring for the Omaha area, as of May 26 we are running around 3" below average thanks to a wet winter.

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Omaha has seen a somewhat dry year after a wet winter.

As one might expect, this has not helped the drought situtation for eastern Nebraska. Omaha has been on the edge of the higher drought for some time, but in the most recent drought update issued May 23 the "severe drought" has been brought further into the metro. Meanwhile, the highest category of exceptional now stretches down to York and Seward.

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Drought situtation in eastern NE and western IA as of May 23

So, is there any relief on the way? Possibly! Next week we see an uptick in shower and storm activity as the pattern we have been in begins to shift somewhat. This is not a slam dunk for storm chances though, as these storms will be scattered throughout. If Omaha get's lucky and we see some of these storms, it might just be enough to bring us out of the historic dry May.

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The 7 day as of May 26, a few rain chances exist next week. May ends Wednesday.