State Impacts

This tool sorts and displays impacts by state from the Drought Impact Reporter through 2022. Users can filter impacts by U.S. Drought Monitor status, season, weeks in drought, industry and date range. The Drought Impact Reporter records impacts that have been documented in news media. This may provide insight on what to expect when a state is experiencing a certain level of drought.

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Start Date Seasons Weeks in Drought Historically observed impacts Impact Description
2021-05-31spring0Burn ban for Polk County, FloridaA burn ban for Polk County was issued on May 27, but took effect on May 31 as a number of fires burned in the county. Lakeland Ledger (Fla.), May 28, 2021
2021-05-27spring0Water conservation urged in Manatee County, FloridaManatee County residents were asked to conserve water as the county experienced supply and demand issues. Potable water pressure was kept at a minimum. WJCT-TV Jacksonville Public Broadcasting (Fla.), May 27, 2021
2021-05-27spring0Residents reminded to follow reclaimed water restrictions in Pinellas County, FloridaHigh water demand in Pinellas County has officials reminding residents to follow reclaimed water restrictions, which will remain in effect through June 30. WJCT-TV Jacksonville Public Broadcasting (Fla.), May 27, 2021
2021-05-27spring0Reclaimed water pressure lowered during day in St. Petersburg, FloridaWater pressure in St. Petersburg announced on May 27 that water pressure would be lowered on reclaimed water during the hottest part of the day. There would be a sufficient quantity of water for irrigating overnight and in the morning. WJCT-TV Jacksonville Public Broadcasting (Fla.), May 27, 2021
2021-05-27spring0Campfires prohibited on Southwest Florida Water Management District landThe Southwest Florida Water Management District prohibited campfires on all District campgrounds until further notice, due to the dry weather and heightened fire danger. WJCT-TV Jacksonville Public Broadcasting (Fla.), May 27, 2021
2021-05-26spring0Outdoor burning discouraged in Collier, Lee counties in FloridaThe Florida Forest Service Caloosahatchee District urged residents and visitors to refrain from outdoor burning as the fire danger was very high in Lee and Collier counties. The Collier County Board of Commissioners authorized a burn ban on May 26. Fort Myers News-Press (Fla.), May 26, 2021
2021-05-26spring0Outdoor burn ban, extraordinary fire hazard in North Port, FloridaNorth Port was deemed to be in an Extraordinary Fire Hazard, due to extreme drought conditions and the wildfire threat. Consequently, an outdoor burning ban was in effect within city limits. The outdoor burning ban will remain in place until further notice. WFTX (Cape Coral, Fla.), May 26, 2021
2021-05-26spring0State of emergency in Sarasota County, FloridaWater restrictions were in effect for numerous counties in the Tampa Bay area as rainfall has been low. On May 26, Sarasota County officials issued a state of emergency for at least a week and requested that the public refrain from unnecessary water use and forgo lawn watering. Water demand hit a record 31+ million gallons on May 25. WJCT-TV Jacksonville Public Broadcasting (Fla.), May 27, 2021
2021-05-25spring0Outdoor water use discouraged in Stuart, FloridaStuart city officials urge residents to curb their outdoor water use and conserve as much as possible because water demand has been 10% higher in the past few weeks, according to the chief operator at the city's water treatment facility. Although the rainy season ought to have begun in Florida, conditions remained dry and water demand was high. WPTV-TV NBC 5 West Palm Beach (Fla.), May 26, 2021
2021-04-10spring0Caution urged with fire in FloridaThe Florida Division of Forestry urged the public to be careful with anything that produces sparks or heat as 48% of the state was abnormally dry. Sun Port Charlotte (Venice, Fla.), April 10, 2021
2020-05-12spring0Phase I Water Shortage in Tampa, FloridaThe Southwest Florida Water Management District declared a Phase I Water Shortage for the Tampa Bay region, due to low rainfall and low river levels. The declaration began May 12 and extends through July 1. All wasteful and unnecessary water use was prohibited. City of Tampa Bay (Fla.), May 7, 2020
2020-05-11spring0Burn restrictions in Florida PanhandleBurn bans were in effect in Washington, Holmes, Gulf and Bay counties in the Florida Panhandle as dry conditions persisted and large wildfires burned in the region. Ft. Walton Beach: Northwest Florida News (Fla.), May 11, 2020
2020-04-28spring0Phase I Water Shortage in southwest FloridaThe Southwest Florida Water Management District announced a Phase I Water Shortage for central and southern portions of the district, including Charlotte, DeSoto, Hardee, Highlands, Hillsborough, Manatee, Pasco, Pinellas and Sarasota counties. The aim of the phase I water shortage is to make the public aware that water restrictions could be looming. Watering schedules have not changed, but wasteful and unnecessary water use was prohibited. Southwest Florida Water Management District (Tampa, Fla.), April 28, 2020
2020-03-30spring0Emergency Operations Center activated due to fire danger around Palm Coast, FloridaThe city of Palm Coast activated its Emergency Operations Center on March 30 in response to a rising drought index as wildfire season neared and rainfall remained scarce since January. When the Keetch-Byram Drought Index reaches 450, the Palm Coast Fire Department will add staff during daytime hours when humidity is low and winds are strong. The Palm Coast Fire Department will meet later in the week to review current wildfire plans and develop strategies to address new challenges. The Flagler Beach and Flagler County fire departments will also be contacted to discuss regional response. Palm Coast Observer (Fla.), March 30, 2020
2020-03-28spring0Open burning banned in Brevard County, FloridaOpen burning was banned in Brevard County, due to drought. The use of barbecue grills and authorized public fireworks displays were still allowed. Space Coast News (Merritt Island, Fla.), March 28, 2020
2020-03-28spring0Burn ban in Osceola County, FloridaA burn ban was adopted in Osceola County, due to the dry conditions and the Keetch-Byram Drought Index exceeding 500. All outdoor burning was prohibited in unincorporated parts of the county until weather and vegetation conditions improve. Around Osceola (Kissimmee, Fla.), March 28, 2020
2020-03-27spring0Burning advisory for Chipola Forestry Center in FloridaThe Florida Forest Service’s Chipola Forestry Center had daily restrictions for any prescribed burning and large pile burning due to the 22-day absence of significant rainfall. The public was urged to exercise caution for all burning activity. The center has also responded to numerous wildfires during March. WJHG-TV News Channel 7 (Panama City Beach, Fla.), March 27, 2020
2020-03-26spring0Pastures, forage production affected by dryness in FloridaAbnormally dry conditions in Florida were affecting pastures and hay and forage production, according to David Zierden, a state climatologist at Florida State University’s Center for Ocean-Atmospheric Prediction Studies. Southeast Ag Net (Ginesville, Fla.), March 26, 2020
2020-03-26spring0Dry well in Fort Myers Shores, FloridaDry conditions in the Fort Myers Shores resulted in a dry well for one elderly couple. They rely on bottled water for drinking and use water from a neighbor for flushing toilets. Abc7 (Naples, Fla.), March 30, 2020
2020-03-24spring0Temporary burn ban in Manatee County, FloridaThe emergency burn ban was extended another week through April 7 in Manatee County, due to drought conditions. SRQ Magazine (Sarasota, Fla.), March 31, 2020 A temporary 7-day burn ban was enacted for Manatee County, due to drought and windy conditions. Fireworks, sparklers, flares, campfires and open burning were restricted. The ban will be revisited weekly. WWSB-TV ABC 7 My SunCoast.com (Sarasota, Fla.), March 24, 2020
2020-01-01winter0Fire activity high in Myakka River District in FloridaThe Myakka River District, encompassing Manatee, Hardee, De Soto, Charlotte and Sarasota counties, had 76 wildfires through May 14, compared to only 44 blazes through the same time frame in 2019. With 2020 being much drier, the public was urged to avoid throwing cigarette butts out car windows, due to the heightened fire danger and activity. Venice Gondolier (Fla.), May 16, 2020
2019-10-02fall0Precautionary burn notices issued in FloridaThe Florida Forestry Service began issuing precautionary burn notices statewide as dry weather continued. WCJB-TV ABC 20 Gainesville (Fla.), Oct. 2, 2019
2019-09-30fall0Public warned of elevated fire danger in FloridaThe Florida Forest Service warned the public about the fire danger as dry conditions and high temperatures persisted. Nearly every county was below normal in rainfall in September. Conditions were worst in the Panhandle. Ft. Walton Beach: Northwest Florida News (Fla.), Sept. 30, 2019
2019-09-23fall0Peanuts, cotton affected by hot, dry weather in northwest FloridaPeanuts in Santa Rosa County were hard to dig up because the soil was so dry. The farmer reported that it was difficult to get the blades into the ground to pull the peanuts up. Cotton in the region was also suffering from the hot, dry weather. Pensacola News Journal (Fla.), Sept. 23, 2019
2019-09-20fall0Caution with fire urged in Bay County, FloridaOfficials at the Emergency Operations Center in Bay County were concerned about the increasingly dry conditions, fire danger and the debris left behind from Hurricane Michael. The fire battalion chief urged the public to be very careful when burning materials outdoors. My Panhandle (Panama City, Fla.), Sept. 20, 2019
2019-06-03summer0Water conservation, reduced water pressure in Jacksonville, FloridaHigh water demand amid a dry spell in northeast Florida prompted JEA, a community owned electric, water and sewer utility in Jacksonville, to push its customers to conserve water. The utility also reduced water use by lowering water pressure in the system so the flow is slower, thereby limiting water use. Water demand on Saturday, June 1, climbed to nearly 102 million gallons of water, and the system is only able to produce about 103 million gallons of water daily in the South Grid. WOKV-AM (Jacksonville, Fla.), June 3, 2019
2019-06-03summer0Water conservation urged in St. Johns County, FloridaWater conservation was requested in St. Johns County as dry weather and heat drove up water demand. WOKV-AM (Jacksonville, Fla.), June 3, 2019
2019-05-30spring0Burn permits not being issued for Gulf County, FloridaAs dry conditions increased in northwest Florida, the Florida Forest Service stopped issuing outdoor burn permits for some counties, including Gulf County. The Florida Star (Port St. Joe, Fla.), May 30, 2019
2019-05-30spring0Florida Forest Service not issuing outdoor burn permits for some countiesAs dry conditions increased in northwest Florida, the Florida Forest Service stopped issuing outdoor burn permits for some counties, including Gulf County. The Florida Star (Port St. Joe, Fla.), May 30, 2019
2019-05-30spring070 wildfires burning in north central FloridaHeat and dryness in north central Florida combined to fuel wildfires, where around 70 wildfires were actively burning a little under 1,500 acres. WCJB-TV ABC 20 Gainesville (Fla.), May 30, 2019
2019-05-30spring0Caution urged with outdoor burning in Alachua County, FloridaResidents of Alachua County were strongly urged to postpone any backyard burning, due to the heightened fire danger, according to Ludie Bond, spokesperson for the Florida Forest Service’s Waccasassa District. Gainesville Sun (Fla.), May 30, 2019
2019-05-28spring0Countywide burn bans in Bradford, Union counties in FloridaCountywide burn bans prohibited outdoor burning in Bradford and Union counties, due to dry conditions. The notices were issued by the Bradford County Emergency Management Department and the Union County Sheriff’s Office. In Bradford County, all outdoor burning, apart from that permitted by the Florida Forest Service, and the use of fireworks was not allowed. County officials also recommended that the public not use motorized equipment, such as ATVs and dirt bikes, to avoid accidentally sparking a fire. WJXT-TV CBS 4 Jacksonville (Fla.), May 28, 2019
2019-05-26spring0Caution needed with fire around Jacksonville, FloridaWith the hot, dry conditions, Nassau County enacted a burn ban until conditions improve. Experts warned people to be cautious with fires over the Memorial Day weekend. WJXT-TV CBS 4 Jacksonville (Fla.), May 26, 2019
2019-05-21spring0Dry conditions a threat to planting activities in northern FloridaDry conditions in northern Florida might cause planting activities to end soon. Southeast Farm Press (Atlanta, Ga.), May 21, 2019
2018-04-04spring0Recreational burn ban in Sarasota County, FloridaA recreational burn ban was issued in Sarasota County, due to dry weather conditions, and will remain in effect until conditions improve. While campfires and other recreational fires were not permitted, cooking fires were still allowed. The Bradenton Herald (Fla.), April 4, 2018
2018-03-28spring0Drought helping recovery of ecosystem in FloridaHurricane Irma raised the level of Lake Okeechobee in 2017 and destroyed miles of underwater vegetation. Drought has allowed the lake level to drop back into a more comfortable range that was allowing the ecosystem to recover, but lower lake levels could be even more beneficial. WFLX-TV FOX 29 West Palm Beach (Fla.), March 28, 2018
2018-03-22spring0Floridians warned of statewide fire riskThe Florida Forest Service warned of a heightened wildfire risk statewide as drought conditions persisted. Extreme fire risk existed in Monroe, Miami-Dade, Broward, Lee, Martin, Indian River, Brevard, Highlands, Polk and Orange counties. WFSU Public Broadcasting (Tallahassee, Fla.), March 22, 2018
2018-03-09spring0Burn ban in Brevard County, FloridaA burn ban was in effect for Brevard County and other parts of the Florida Forest Service’s Orlando District because the dry season turned unusually dry in February, leading to an increased threat of brush fires. The forest service also added a second dispatcher for its shifts to be able to handle multiple fires, if needed. Florida Today (Melbourne, Fla.), March 9, 2018
2018-03-08spring0Burn ban in unincorporated Osceola County, FloridaA burn ban was in effect for the unincorporated parts of Osceola County until further notice, due to dry conditions and a Keetch-Byram Drought Index exceeding 500. Around Osceola (Kissimmee, Fla.), March 8, 2018
2017-04-25spring0Numerous Florida counties with fire restrictionsThe elevated fire danger and prevalence of wildfires across Florida prompted numerous counties to enact burn bans to protect lives and property. Counties with bans include Alachua, Baker, Brevard, Citrus, Collier, Flagler, Glades, Hendry, Hernando, Lake, Levy, Manatee, Marion, Nassau, Okeechobee, Orange, Osceola, Palm Beach, Pasco, Polk, Putnam, Sarasota, Seminole, St. Lucie, Union and Volusia. WKMG-TV CBS 6 Orlando (Fla.), April 25, 2017
2017-04-11spring0State of emergency due to wildfires in FloridaGov. Rick Scott declared a state of emergency for Florida on April 11 due to the multitude of wildfires burning in the parched state. Flames have already scorched 250 percent more land in the first three months of 2017 than during the same time frame in 2016. More than 100 active wildfires have consumed more than 20,000 acres across Florida, according to Agriculture Commissioner Adam Putnam. Fort Lauderdale Sun-Sentinel & SouthFlorida.com (Fla.), April 11, 2017
2017-03-15spring0Water shortage warning in parts of northeast and central FloridaA water shortage warning was in effect for the St. Johns River Water Management District because rainfall has been below normal for parts of northeast and central Florida. Residents in parts of Nassau, Flagler, Baker, Clay, Putnam, Marion and Lake counties were urged to voluntarily reduce water use, particularly outdoor irrigation. WJXT-TV CBS 4 Jacksonville (Fla.), March 15, 2017
2017-02-28winter0Phase I Water Shortage in three Florida countiesThe Southwest Florida Water Management District declared a Phase I Water Shortage beginning March 10 for parts of Lake, Marion and Sumter counties. An interagency agreement with the St. Johns River Water Management District means that the only Marion County locales affected by the order would be the city of Dunnellon and the area enclosed by The Villages. Groundwater levels in Lake County were extremely abnormal and were severely abnormal in Marion and Sumter counties. The announcement of the phase I water shortage was to notify the public that additional watering restrictions could be enacted if conditions do not change. Local utilities must review and implement procedures for enforcing year-round water conservation strategies and water shortage restrictions. Ocala Star-Banner (Fla.), Feb. 28, 2017
2017-02-28winter0Boaters warned about low water levels in Marion County, FloridaMarion County Parks and Recreation issued a notice warning boaters to exercise caution when launching and retrieving boats, due to low water conditions at county lakes and rivers. The shallow waters may also mean that objects are nearer to the water’s surface and could pose hazards. Ocala Star-Banner (Fla.), Feb. 28, 2017
2017-02-09winter0Water conservation urged in South FloridaAmid extremely dry conditions during South Florida’s dry season, the South Florida Water Management District encouraged residents to increase their water conservation efforts. Water managers were operating the system to conserve as much water as possible. The region had a record-dry November. Santiva Chronicle (Fla.), Feb. 9, 2017
2017-01-06winter0Water conservation strongly urged in Cape Coral, FloridaIn a Jan. 6 press release, Cape Coral residents were warned that excessive water use was straining the system and that conservation was needed. Seasonal compliance specialists were hired to monitor water use, but water consumption has continued to rise. On Tuesday, Jan. 10, when no outdoor water was permitted, residents drew 12.6 million gallons from the canal system, which is used for lawn watering. Cape Coral has 400 miles of freshwater canals, from which the public draws millions of gallons of water, but there is a schedule stating when watering may be done. On Wednesday, Jan. 4, 36.6 million gallons were drawn from the canal system. The following Wednesday, Jan. 11, water use from canals rose to 38 million gallons. Two fines and hundreds of warning citations have been issued to discourage excessive water use. Fort Myers News-Press (Fla.), Jan. 13, 2017
2017-01-01winter0Drought leading to more wildfires in South FloridaThe rain deficit has upped the wildfire threat in South Florida, with the most brush fires since 2011 and double that seen during 2016. Since the start of the year, 59 fires were reported in the Everglades District, which encompasses Palm Beach, Broward, Miami-Dade and Monroe counties. Palm Beach Post (Fla.), April 1, 2017
2017-01-01winter0High fire activity in Manatee County, FloridaManatee County, just south of Tampa, has seen 22 wildfires since the start of the year, compared with just seven fires during the same time in 2016. Bradenton Herald (Fla.), May 17, 2017
2017-01-01winter0Fleas more problematic than usual around Orlando, FloridaFlea problems arose in January and February, while fleas typically do not become problematic until March, said an Orlando veterinarian. Fleas tend to thrive in warm temperatures and high humidity. Orlando Sentinel (Fla.), May 17, 2017
2017-01-01winter0Unusually high fire activity in Caloosahatchee field unit of FloridaWildland firefighters with Florida Forest Service’s Caloosahatchee field unit fought 83 brush fires in Collier, Lee and Hendry counties from the start of 2017 through April 12 and were nearing the 126 fires battled in the three counties in all of 2016. The 83 fires in 2017 burned more than 8,000 acres in areas defended by state firefighters, the most since 2011 when 14,998 acres burned, according to data from the Florida Forestry Service. Fort Myers News-Press (Fla.), April 14, 2017
2017-01-01winter0Multitude of wildfires burning in FloridaSince the start of 2017, more than 2,100 wildfires burned 170,000 acres in Florida as the dry winter contributed to a busy fire season. In all of 2016, roughly the same number of wildfires burned about 53,476 acres. As of May 15, there were more than 127 active fires in the state. WJXT-TV CBS 4 Jacksonville (Fla.), May 16, 2017 Florida has endured more than 2,000 wildfires this year, burning more than 150,000 acres. More than 100 blazes were active on May 8. “Florida is in the middle of its worst wildfire season in years – with no end in sight.,” said Florida Agriculture Commissioner Adam Putnam in a prepared statement. Ocala Star-Banner (Fla.), May 8, 2017 On the morning of April 28, the Florida Forest Service reported 99 active wildfires in Florida scorching 28,621 acres, apart from the 107,346 acres of fire affecting federal land. Pinellas Beaches Patch (St. Petersburg, Fla.), April 28, 2017 In Florida, there were 106 wildfires charring 124,000 acres as of April 19, as the fire season got off to a brisk start. The Florida fire season has not yet peaked, according to Jim Karels, director of the Florida Forest Service, who noted that the state was seeing an “active early fire season.” The fire season tends to peak in April, May and June, with the worst often occurring in May and June. Daytona Times (Fla.), April 20, 2017 Ninety-seven active wildfires were burning in Florida on April 13, with 28 fires affecting 100 acres or more. Since the start of the year, more than 126,000 acres burned on state and federal lands, according to the Florida Forest Service. Fort Myers News-Press (Fla.), April 14, 2017
2016-11-03fall0Fire danger climbing in FloridaFlorida Commissioner of Agriculture Adam H. Putnam and the Florida Forest Service warned the public to exercise caution with all outdoor fires, due to the increased fire danger and fire incidence in many parts of the state. WNFB-FM North Florida Now (Lake City, Fla.), Nov. 3, 2016
2015-11-12fall0Dead seagrass, burgeoning algae blooms in Florida BayTwo years of localized drought have increased the salinity of Florida Bay, killing seagrasses and causing algae blooms. Miami Herald (Fla.), Nov. 12, 2015
2015-07-16summer0Request to install emergency water pumps in Florida's Lake OkeechobeeThe South Florida Water Management District requested permission from the Army Corps of Engineers to install emergency pumps to pull water from Lake Okeechobee. Water was drained from the lake during the spring to make room for water from summer storms, which have not yet materialized. In the meantime, the lake was about 1.7 feet above the point at which pumps would be needed to move water to the south for agriculture and to replenish water supplies for the Seminole Tribe, West Palm Beach and other cities. Environmental concerns and the well-being of the Everglades snail kite were slowing the decision about the pumps. Fort Lauderdale Sun-Sentinel & SouthFlorida.com, July 16, 2015
2015-04-01spring0More brush fires in South FloridaIn Miami-Dade and Broward counties, there have been 81 brush fires during the past 3 ½ months, up from 51 during the same time last year as drought elevates the fire danger. Miami Herald (Fla.), July 19, 2015
2013-12-16winter0Outdoor burning was prohibited in Seminole County, FloridaOutdoor burning was prohibited in Seminole County starting on Dec. 16, due to the high drought index. The burn ban will remain in effect until conditions ease. Oviedo, Florida, Dec. 16, 2013
2013-11-18fall0Dry conditions in Florida prompt St. Lucie County firefighters to respond more aggressively to brush firesThe drier than normal weather led St. Lucie County officials to set up a brush fire task force. Whereas fire fighters usually take one brush truck to respond to a brush fire call, they now respond with two brush trucks, an engine and a tanker to be sure to get the fire under control before it grows. WPTV-TV NBC 5 West Palm Beach (Fla.), Nov. 18, 2013
2013-05-11spring0Lakes in Volusia County in Florida very low due to below normal precipitation in six of the last seven yearsLakes in Volusia County are very low due to below normal precipitation in six of the last seven years. Trout Lake in Deltona is nearly dry; Lake Helen is so low that it is comprised of three small lakes rather than one large lake; and Lake Winnemissett east of DeLand is lower than it has ever been, setting new lows in February and March. An angler said that he cannot put his boat in Lake Helen because the low water level would make it impossible to get his boat back out of the water. Boat ramps are closed at Lake Colby in Cassadaga and Indian Lake in Tiger Bay State Forest and low water levels have made using the boat ramp at Lake Dias in DeLeon Springs difficult. Shallower lakes present threats to the health of both boaters and their vessels. A climate specialist with the National Weather Service noted that during eight of the past 14 dry seasons, which run from December through April, precipitation was less than 25 percent of average. Daytona Beach News-Journal (Fla.), May 11, 2013
2013-02-13winter0Tighter water restrictions for Hillsborough, Pinellas and Pasco counties in FloridaLow rainfall led the Southwest Florida Water Management District to tighten water restrictions for Hillsborough, Pinellas and Pasco counties. Outdoor watering will be permitted once weekly between 6 p.m. and 8 a.m. beginning on March 13. In addition to the meager rainfall, the C.W. Bill Young Regional Reservoir had been drained and was undergoing repairs, further limiting the area’s water supply. Pasco TBO.com (Fla.), Feb. 26, 2013
2013-01-24winter0Voluntary burn ban in Polk County, FloridaThe Polk County Fire Rescue officials urge residents to voluntarily forgo outdoor burning, due to the dry conditions. The Keetch-Byram Drought Index average for the county was 539. Lakeland Ledger (Fla.), Jan. 24, 2013
2012-06-23summer0Drought causing alligators to relocate in Collier County, FloridaDrought has alligators on the move, seeking wetter habitat in Collier County. The movement puts them in danger as they try to cross roadways, as evidenced by six dead alligators. Wildlife officials asked drivers to be on the lookout for alligators on the road. Lakeland Ledger (Fla.), June 23, 2012
2012-01-16winter0Water shortage warning for South FloridaThe South Florida Water Management District issued a water shortage warning in an effort to "encourage continued vigilance and voluntary water conservation." This dry season has been extraordinarily dry as the rain gauge at Palm Beach International Airport accumulated just 2.23 inches of rain since November 1, 2011. That amount is less than last year’s dry season, which was the driest in about 80 years. Lake Okeechobee was 13.65 feet above sea level on January 3, 2012, which is about a foot lower than the historical average of about 14.73 feet for December. Palm Beach Post (Fla.), Jan 16, 2012
2012-01-01winter0Active fire season in northeastern FloridaThe Florida Forest Service region covering Flagler, St. Johns and Volusia counties has experienced 65 brush fires since the start of the year. This has been the most active fire season in the last five years. Daytona Beach News-Journal (Fla.), March 13, 2012
2011-12-03winter0Wildlife in Paynes Prairie Preserve State Park in northern Florida was moving to different areas to accommodate lower water levelsWildlife in the Paynes Prairie Preserve State Park was moving to different areas to accommodate lower water levels in the park. Sandhill cranes commonly roost in the park overnight, but have found other areas with more water and return to the park during the day to feed. Alligators were relocated from the park to area lakes with more water because they appeared to be underfed and dehydrated. The La Chua Trail was dry and hosted no wading birds or ducks. Visitors coming to see sandhill cranes and other wading birds may soon be disappointed if the area does not receive rain. Records kept by the National Weather Service indicated that Gainesville had a rainfall deficit of 12.11 inches for the year. Gainesville Sun (Fla.), Dec. 3, 2011
2011-10-15fall0Water releases from Lake Okeechobee to Caloosahatchee River in South Florida curtailedWater releases from Lake Okeechobee were curtailed for a few months due to low lake levels after South Florida endured the driest October to June time period since records were kept. Fort Lauderdale Sun-Sentinel & SouthFlorida.com (Fla.), Dec. 15, 2011
2011-06-09summer0Campfires prohibited in the Suwannee River Water Management District in northern FloridaCampfires were prohibited in the Suwannee River Water Management District due to drought and elevated fire danger. People driving on district property were also urged to be careful not to inadvertently start a fire. The Suwannee River Water Management District includes Columbia, Dixie, Gilchrist, Hamilton, Lafayette, Madison, Suwannee, Taylor and Union counties and portions of Alachua, Baker, Bradford, Jefferson, Levy and Putnam counties. Gainesville Sun (Fla.), June 9, 2011
2011-01-01winter0Twenty-seven Florida counties received federal disaster declarationTwenty-seven counties in Florida were declared to be natural disaster areas by the U.S. Department of Agriculture due to ongoing drought and heat since January 1, 2011. The counties affected by the declaration include Bay, Brevard, Calhoun, Charlotte, Escambia, Gadsden, Gulf, Hamilton, Hillsborough, Holmes, Jackson, Jefferson, Lake, Lee, Leon, Liberty, Madison, Okaloosa, Orange, Osceola, Palm Beach, Polk, Santa Rosa, Suwannee, Wakulla, Walton and Washington. Neighboring counties, which are also eligible for aid are Broward, Collier, Columbia, De Soto, Franklin, Gilchrist, Glades, Hardee, Hendry, Highlands, Indian River, Lafayette, Manatee, Marion, Martin, Okeechobee, Pasco, Pinellas, Sarasota, Seminole, Sumter, Taylor and Volusia. This declaration permits affected farmers, ranchers, and other agricultural producers to apply for low-interest emergency loans from the Farm Service Agency. The Palm Beach Post (Fla.), Aug. 1, 2011 and the USDA's Farm Service Agency website.
2010-12-01winter0Drought increased number of wildfires in Southern FloridaThere were 53 wildfires in South Florida from December 2010 through March 2011, compared to just 30 wildfires last year during the same period. The increased incidence of wildfires was attributed to the dry conditions in the southern part of the state, which has not endured such dryness in 80 years. Palm Beach County only received 12.4 inches or roughly one-third of its average rainfall between October 2010 and February 2011. Palm Beach Post (Fla.), March 15, 2011
2010-12-01winter0Twice the number of wildfires in Everglades during dry seasonThere were twice as many wildfires in the Everglades between December 2010 and late March as there was the previous year. The greater incidence of wildfires coincided with a particularly arid dry season for southern Florida. Palm Beach Post (Fla.), March 25, 2011
2010-11-17fall0Conservation requested from customers of Southwest Florida Water Management DistrictThe Southwest Florida Water Management District adopted a modified water shortage order to take effect on November 17. Water customers are urged to conserve water wherever possible. Lakeland Ledger (FL), Dec. 2
2010-11-05fall0More than 30 Florida counties declared disaster areasMore than 30 Florida counties were declared to be natural disaster areas by the U.S. Department of Agriculture due to cold and drought between November 5 and December 17, 2010. The counties affected by the declaration include Alachua, Bradford, Charlotte, Clay, Collier, De Soto, Dixie, Flagler, Gilchrist, Glades, Hardee, Hendry, Highlands, Indian River, Lee, Levy, Manatee, Martin, Miami-Dade, Okeechobee, Palm Beach, Polk, Putnam, Sarasota, St. Johns and St. Lucie counties. Farmers in the neighboring counties of Baker, Brevard, Broward, Citrus, Columbia, Duval, Hillsborough, Lafayette, Lake, Marion, Monroe, Orange, Osceola, Pasco, Sumter, Suwannee, Taylor, Union and Volusia may also qualify for aid. This declaration permits affected farmers, ranchers, and other agricultural producers to apply for low-interest emergency loans from the Farm Service Agency. Gainesville Sun (FL), Jan. 27, 2011 and USDA's Farm Service Agency website.
2010-10-22fall0No burn permits being issued in five Florida countiesThe Florida Division of Forestry is not giving out burn permits to those in Alachua, Gilchrist, Levy, Marion, Putnam counties or the Waccasassa District due to the drought conditions and high fire danger. Gainesville Sun (FL), Oct. 22
2010-10-01fall0Four South Florida counties declared to be disaster areasFour counties in Florida were declared to be natural disaster areas by the U.S. Department of Agriculture due to drought between October 1 and December 31, 2010. The counties affected by the declaration include Glades, Hendry, Highlands and Indian River because they lost substantial amounts of forage crops and pasture. Neighboring counties, such as Palm Beach, Martin, St. Lucie and Indian River were also eligible for aid. This declaration permits affected farmers, ranchers, and other agricultural producers to apply for low-interest emergency loans from the Farm Service Agency. Palm Beach Post (Fla.), April 6, 2011.
2010-10-01fall0Businesses in several Florida counties eligible for assistance through the Small Business AdministrationSmall businesses in 16 Florida counties were eligible for low-interest loans from the Small Business Administration for financial loss due to drought from October 1 through December 31, 2010. The counties include Broward, Charlotte, Collier, DeSoto, Glades, Hardee, Hendry, Highlands, Indian River, Lee, Martin, Okeechobee, Osceola, Palm Beach, Polk and Saint Lucie. The declaration makes small businesses, small agricultural cooperatives, and nurseries eligible for loans through the Economic Injury Disaster Loan program. Farmers and ranchers should not apply. Applications must be received by December 5, 2011. The Miami Herald (Fla.), Nov. 9, 2011
2009-12-03winter0Holiday boat parade in Winter Haven cancelled due to low water levelThe Winter Haven holiday boat parade has been cancelled due to low water levels in the canals connecting the lakes. The water level is roughly eight inches below the minimum desired depth.
2009-12-01winter0Southwest Florida Water Management District customers urged to forego lawn watering for a weekHomeowners in the Southwest Florida Water Management District are urged to forego lawn watering for a week during the next three months to conserve water as a part of the district’s new “Skip a Week” campaign.
2009-06-16summer0Brush fire near Florida Panther Wildlife RefugeA wildfire in the Florida Panther National Wildlife Refuge burned 75 acres after lightning started the fire on the evening of June 16. A U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Management Officer stated that some fire hazard remains from the recent drought.
2009-03-05spring0Southern Florida urged to conserve waterWater users in southern Florida are urged by the South Florida Water Management District to conserve water as this year’s dry season has been extraordinarily dry.
2009-02-24winter0Extreme water shortage restriction for Southwestern FloridaCharlotte, DeSoto, Sarasota, and Manatee counties remain in an extreme water shortage restriction which began on February 24, 2009 and was extended through October 31, 2009 as below normal rainfall persists in the region. Lawn watering is limited to once weekly.
2009-02-18winter0Three brush fires in Charlotte and Hendry countiesThree wildfires in southwestern Florida burned on February 18 and were considered to be a symptom of drought conditions in the area. A brush fire in Charlotte County scorched roughly 40 acres and prompted the closing of Interstate 75 for several hours until the fire was brought under control. A second fire in Charlotte County consumed over 20 acres near a residential area. A fire in Hendry County charred 475 acres and forced people to evacuate their homes for a few hours.
2009-02-18winter0Winds and dry conditions contribute to two wildfiresDry conditions, strong winds, and low humidity combined to make fires difficult to control in Charlotte County as two fires raged. The first scorched 40 acres, destroyed three empty houses, and led to the closing of Interstate 75 for a short time. The second fire menaced the Deep Creek subdivision. The Keetch-Byram Drought Index for Charlotte County was over 600, with 0 representing the least fire danger and 800 representing the greatest fire danger.
2009-02-16winter0Low water level of Peace River makes navigation difficultThe Polk County section of the Peace River is too low to allow canoeing or kayaking, according to a columnist for a Lakeland newspaper. From the Polk-Hardee County line to the coast, shoals and low water levels makes navigation difficult.
2008-12-30winter0Burn ban in Alachua CountyA burning ban is in effect for Alachua County, due to dry conditions. Few permits for controlled burns have been issued by forestry officials.
2008-12-17winter0Slow crop growth and stress in Union CountySmall grains are not growing well in Union County, due to dry conditions. Vegetables also display evidence of drought stress.
2008-12-17winter0Small grains and pasture forage hurt by dry conditionsSmall grains are not germinating and pasture forage has been hindered by drought in the Big Bend counties.
2008-12-09winter0Water conservation urged during holiday meal preparationThe Southwest Florida Water Management District urges residents to conserve water by making a few changes during their holiday meal preparations. Thaw foods in the refrigerator or microwave instead of using water to thaw them, wash produce in a pan, and don’t let rinse water run continuously when washing dishes by hand. Additional conservation tips can be found at the district’s website.
2008-11-15fall079 citations for water violations in Pasco CountyThere were 79 citations issued to water restriction violators in Pasco County in the past week, compared to 273 citations in the past year. Thirty county utility employees were recently deputized to assist with enforcement of the water restrictions, which has resulted in more citations.
2008-11-03fall0Ban on resodding in Hillsborough, Pinellas, and Polk countiesThe Southwest Florida Water Management District has prohibited resodding and other new plantings that require water as the Pinellas, Pasco, and Hillsborough county area endures continued dry conditions. If reclaimed water is used for irrigation however, sod can be planted. New sod can also be planted at new homes and as landscaping near new roads. Landscapers and sod businesses are protesting vehemently about the new restrictions because they expect the ban on resodding to put them out of business.
2008-05-21spring0Fire, Water Supply & Quality impact from Media submitted on 5/21/2008The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is sending more water from Water Conservation Area 3 to Everglades National Park. The goal is to keep more water in Shark River Slough so it doesn’t become dry as quickly in the upcoming days since winds are anticipated to push the wildfire in the direction of the Shark River Slough. Impact Source: Media More Information: http://www.gasparillagazette.com/breaking_news/articles.asp?articleID=3524
2008-05-21spring0Fire impact from Media submitted on 5/22/2008The Mustang Corner fire continues to burn in the Everglades in the southern part of Dade County. It has burned 40,000 acres and was 50 % contained on May 21. The fire threatens the only known habitat of the Cape Sable seaside sparrow, which is endangered. Richmond Drive on the west side of the park is still closed due to the fire. Impact Source: Media More Information: http://www.palmbeachpost.com/localnews/content/local_news/epaper/2008/05/21/0521burnban.html
2008-05-20spring0Society & Public Health impact from Media submitted on 5/20/2008Officials continue to warn the young, elderly, and those with respiratory problems to remain indoors while the lakebed of Lake Okeechobee and the Everglades fires, among others, burn in the area and diminish air quality. Impact Source: Media More Information: http://www.heraldtribune.com/article/20080520/APN/805200750
2008-05-06spring0Fire, Society & Public Health impact from Media submitted on 5/7/2008A 4,000-acre marsh fire continues to smolder along the edge of Lake Okeechobee. The fire has produced a heavy veil of smoke that is prompting officials to issue health advisories for people in Miami-Dade and Broward counties. The smoke is thick in Moore Haven and extends as far south as Key Biscayne in Miami-Dade County. There is concern that the slow-moving fire may lead to muck fires, which require heavy rain to fully extinguish. Impact Source: Media More Information: http://www.miamiherald.com/news/miami_dade/story/523766.html
2008-01-01winter0Fewer wading birds nesting in FLoridaThere were 51 % fewer wading bird nests in South Florida in 2008 since two years of drought and some exceptional precipitation this spring were not conducive to nest building. There were 68,750 nests documented in 2002, but only 18,418 nests in 2008, which is 41 % of average for the past eight years.
2007-11-09fall0Water Supply & Quality impact from Media submitted on 11/12/2007The South Florida Water Management District is installing new pumps along Lake Okeechobee to permit water to be pumped from the lake when the water level in the lake falls below 7 feet. The current water distribution system is gravity-operated and only works if there is more than 10 feet of water in Lake Okeechobee. On November 6, the lake level was 10.4 feet. The district is attempting to store as much water as possible by closing canals that usually allow water to flow to the ocean. Impact Source: Media More Information: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/21671160/
2007-11-07fall0Water Supply & Quality impact from Media submitted on 11/7/2007Lawn watering is allowed twice per week in the South Florida Water Management District. Those with odd-numbered addresses may water between 4 am and 8 am on Wednesdays and Saturdays, while hand-watering is permitted between 5 pm and 7 pm on those days. Those with even-numbered addresses may water between 4 am and 8 am on Thursdays and Sundays, while hand-watering is permitted between 5 pm and 7 pm on those days. Impact Source: Media More Information: http://www.sun-sentinel.com/news/local/broward/sfl-fl2bdroughtbox1106nbnov07,0,2502209,print.story
2007-10-28fall0Water Supply & Quality impact from Media submitted on 2/29/2008There were at least five people cited for water restriction violations in Sunny Isles Beach in the last four months, according to the community development director. To raise awareness about watering restrictions, the city is in the process of passing a new ordinance that includes new penalties for water restriction violators. People who violate the restrictions will be warned for an infraction, fined $75 for a second offense, and fined $500 for a third offense. Further violations will result in time in jail, in addition to a $500 fine. Impact Source: Media More Information: http://www.miamiherald.com/news/miami_dade/aventura/story/438098.html
2007-10-01fall0Water Supply & Quality, Society & Public Health impact from Media submitted on 11/29/2007In October, $345,250 in fines were handed out to people violating water use restrictions in the South Florida Water Management District (SFWMD). The entire area remains under phase 2 restrictions, which limit outdoor water use to twice per week. Impact Source: Media More Information: http://www.naplesnews.com/news/2007/nov/23/home_dig_your_own_well_escape_restrictions_well_no/?neapolitan Monetary Loss: $345,250
2007-06-06summer0Relief, Response & Restrictions impact from Media submitted on 6/6/2007Thirteen golf courses in south Florida have been fined for violating water restrictions. One golf course didn’t adhere to the water restrictions at all, while two golf courses in Broward County, one in Miami-Dade County, and nine in Palm Beach County were fined from $1,500 to $6,000 for violations. The water use reduction goal for the 177 courses in Miami-Dade, Broward, Palm Beach and Monroe counties was 24 %. Overall the spokesman for the South Florida Water Management District was pleased with the results of the conservation efforts because the golf courses exceeded the 24 % reduction goal. Impact Source: Media More Information: http://www.miamiherald.com/569/story/130054.html
2007-06-06summer0Society & Public Health impact from Media submitted on 6/6/2007A Miami Beach man is so troubled by people who violate watering restrictions that he videotapes them as they water at incorrect times and posts the recordings on YouTube. The man feels that violators display an arrogant attitude to disregard rules that all others are expected to follow. Impact Source: Media More Information: http://www.miamiherald.com/569/story/130054.html
2006-05-06spring0Society & Public Health impact from Media submitted on 5/8/2006Drought-induced low water levels along Peace River near Arcadia have attracted both amateur and professional fossil hunters to the river's banks. Riverbed exposed by the receding water levels here is now accessible to the hunters, who are finding such things as fossilized tortoise and bird claws. One fossil hunter has traveled here from Nebraska because of the prime conditions. Impact Source: Media More Information: http://www.sun-herald.com/NewsArchive2/050606/np13.htm?date=050606&story=np13.htm

To view simple examples of impacts reported in the past in each state at different levels of drought, check out our tables of historically observed impacts.