City of Auburn no longer in a drought

Lake Ogletree, the city's reservoir rose eight feet after the recent rains.

AUBURN, Ala. – Due to rainfall New Year’s Eve weekend and Monday, the City of Auburn is no longer under a drought.

The city went into mandatory water restrictions in early November due to the dry conditions, but with the drought being lifted, those restrictions are no longer in effect.

Matt Dunn, the Assistant Director for the Auburn Water Management Resource Department said it is estimated that the city received six inches or more of rain New Year’s Eve weekend and Monday. That rainfall helped raise the elevation of the city’s reservoir, Lake Ogletree from 472 feet above mean sea level to 480 feet. Dunn said that the city feels they are in a good spot where they can get normal rainfall during the winter to bring the reservoir to a full-pool level of 486 feet for the spring.

“To get a rainfall of that type of magnitude, we don’t get those types of events very often,” Dunn said. “For us to get an event that took us from a stage two type drought condition to being out of a drought over a weekend was very important for us.”

Auburn Fire Division Deputy Chief, Matt Jordan, said that during the dry conditions, they received a high number of calls for brush and grassfires at a time where they normally do not get many. He added that the recent rain will be beneficial to them and the city.

“We know now that if the water table is back, we’re getting that saturation in the ground back to where it should be,” Deputy Chief Jordan said. “It’s going to definitely help out with the amount of grassfires and brushfires that we’ll respond to.”

“We would continue to ask that our customers with their water usage know that there is water available and we have adequate water available for our customers but continue to be water wise,” Dunn said.

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