February Rainfall Update: Icy weather increases run-off, rainfall below average

February brought an unusual mix of winter weather to the Savannah River Basin, with several instances of snow and ice accumulation in the Thurmond, Russell and Hartwell sub-basins.

The widespread winter storm that swept through the area Feb. 11 – Feb. 13 brought approximately 1.82 inches of rainfall to the Thurmond sub-basin, 1.75 inches to Russell, and 1.28 inches to Hartwell.

Melting snow and ice boosted run-off into the reservoirs, keeping them above the winter guide curve level. Additionally, the basin experienced a single rainfall event Feb. 21 that brought an inch of rain to all three reservoirs.

By the end of the month, Hartwell had climbed to 659.4 feet per mean sea level (ft-msl), only 0.6 feet below full summer pool.

The Thurmond reservoir experienced its highest level of the month on Feb. 19 and 20 at 329 ft-msl, which is 1 foot below full summer pool. Thurmond finished the month at 328.7 ft-msl.

Overall, the Hartwell sub-basin recorded 3.3 inches of rainfall this February, which is 65.4 percent of normal rainfall for this time of year. Russell and Thurmond came closer to achieving average monthly rainfall. Russell recorded 3.7 inches this February (88.4 percent of normal) and Thurmond received 3.8 inches (86.5 percent of normal).

RainfallBarGraphFeb2014 (2)

While monthly rainfall ranked below average, the ground is saturated and conditions are favorable for additional run-off. We continue to target the winter guide curve as we gradually refill the reservoirs to achieve summer full pool by the end of March.

As always, we welcome your comments, questions and feedback. Thanks for reading us!

~Tracy Robillard, public affairs specialist


About U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Savannah District

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Savannah District oversees a multimillion dollar military construction program at 11 Army and Air Force installations in Georgia and North Carolina. We also manage water resources across the Coastal Georgia region, including maintenance dredging of the Savannah and Brunswick harbors; operation of three hydroelectric dams and reservoirs along the upper Savannah River; and administration of an extensive stream and wetland permitting and mitigation program within the state of Georgia. Follow us on Twitter @SavannahCorps and on Facebook.com/SavannahCorps
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