Beaufort, Martin counties in severe drought

Published 8:30 pm Saturday, August 25, 2007

By Staff
Easley asks residents to use less water
Staff Writer
Beaufort and Martin counties are under a severe drought advisory, according to the N.C. Drought Management Advisory Council.
A drought-monitoring map on the council’s Web site shows dry conditions have spread statewide. The highest level, exceptional drought, covers 12 counties in the western part of North Carolina.
Gov. Mike Easley directed state agencies, in all 100 counties, Friday to stop nonessential water use because of the drought. He’s asking all residents to cut back their water consumption by 20 percent.
While there have been isolated, brief storms recently, weather forecasters predict no immediate relief, Hoffman said.
Across the state, lack of rainfall is drying reservoirs, devastating farm crops and livestock. Reduced water levels have forced the closing of some recreational facilities at state lakes. The N.C. Division of Forest Resources has imposed a statewide ban on open burning and canceled all burning permits.
The weather forecast is calling for little chance of significant rainfall during the next week. As of Thursday, 59 public water systems had imposed voluntary water restrictions and 21 had imposed mandatory water restrictions because of the drought, according to a written statement from the state.
To view the advisory council’s report and drought map, go to