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Look for more rain soon - Met Office

Published:Thursday | August 25, 2016 | 12:00 AMJodi-Ann Gilpin

Drought conditions are expected to improve in at least three parishes that were experiencing severe dry periods, the Meteorological Service of Jamaica is forecasting.

The National Water Commission (NWC) said it was forced to reduce water supply in some Corporate Area communities to just 16 hours per day because of drought conditions. It said that as of yesterday, water in storage at the Mona Reservoir had declined to 74 per cent, while at the Hermitage Dam, the level has dropped to 63 per cent.

But in an interview with The Gleaner yesterday, Evan Thompson, head of the Meteorological Service of Jamaica, noted that based on projections for the next two months, there should be vast improvement.

"The country, generally, is not experiencing drought. I believe there are three parishes up to the end of July that were experiencing drought conditions. Two were normal and one was severe, meaning under 40 per cent abnormal. That's the position at the end of July," he said.

"The entire island is still above the normal condition. St Mary was the worst," he continued.


Heat will remain


Thompson indicated, however, that while there will be improvement, international projections are showing that temperatures will remain above normal for the next couple of months.

"I cannot speak definitively to what has been happening locally, but I know that generally, as it relates to temperatures, it is forecasted a bit above the norm. So we do expect warmer than normal temperatures going into October," he said.

"July is traditionally our dry month for the summer. July is actually the driest month in this season, summer, but we do expect that for the period, things will improve. The forecast is that things will be about normal between August to October," Thompson said.

He added, "We don't expect things to worsen. Things should be levelling off over the next couple of months."