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America just had its wettest 12-month period on record

America just had its wettest 12-month period on record
[Photo: pan xiaozhen/Unsplash]

If you feel like it’s been raining forever, you’re not imagining things.

Precipitation over the last 12 months (from May 2018 through April 2019) was the highest for the contiguous United States since record-keeping began in 1895, Tampa’s WTSP reports.

The wet weather may have forced millions of Americans to cancel their outdoor plans, but it comes with a bit of good news as well. According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), the United States moved closer to being almost completely drought-free in April, with only 2% of the country experiencing drought conditions.

That is especially welcome news in California, which ended a costly seven-year drought only two months ago. But the wet weather has also led to catastrophic flooding in many areas, particularly along the Missouri River. The National Weather Service reports that 44 deaths have been attributed to flooding so far this year, with 10 this month alone.

Flood deaths for 2019 so far [NWS]
And then there’s the Northeast, which has been so cold and wet this month that it feels more like early February than the middle of May. So what’s the deal? According to AccuWeather, we can blame a very area of high pressure from northern Canada, which has pushed the cold air southward into the Northeast. Melissa Di Spigna, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service, called it a “very, very slow-moving pressure system” in an interview with the New York Times.

Fortunately, relief is on the way, as the system is expected to move east sometime tomorrow. But we just thought you’d like to know that you’re not imagining things. It has been raining a lot.

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