County is drought free

South Carolina is drought free for the first time since December 2009, according to the state Department of Natural Resources.
The department's Drought Response Committee met April 24 and downgraded 22 counties from "moderate" drought status to "normal." The other 24 counties were downgraded from "incipient" to "normal."
According to Hope Mizzell, S.C. State Climatologist, "Most stations across the state reported 100 percent to 225 percent of normal rainfall over the past 60 days. The most important factor ending the drought, however, has been the state's adequate rainfall for an extended five-month period, which coincided with the hydrologic recharge season."
Another reason for the downgrade is the committee sees a high probability of above average rainfall in the coming weeks.
Barnwell County had been labeled "moderate" before the meeting and was in severe drought conditions as recently as December.
According to the National Weather Service, in the 60 days before April 24 the majority of Barnwell received 6 to 8 inches of rainfall, which is the expected amount. Areas in the southeast of the county had 8 to 10 inches while parts in the north received 4 to 6 inches.