LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) — Drought conditions in Southern California have left downtown Los Angeles the driest it’s ever been since rain records started over a century ago, according to reports.

KNX 1070’s Claudia Peschiutta reports meteorologists with the National Weather Service (NWS) may be giving up hope for a wet El Niño weather pattern this year.

The last two back-to-back water years – which are recorded from July 1 to June 30 – for downtown LA have marked the driest two years on record since 1877, NWS meteorologist Scott Sukup said.

During the 2012 to 2014 rainy seasons, the downtown region saw less than 12 inches of rainfall, about 18 inches below average, according to NWS data.

The 2012-13 year marked the sixth-driest year on record, while 2013-14 was the seventh-driest, according to records.

In each of those years, rain totals came in at about 40 percent of normal.

A spring rainstorm during March that saw the greatest number of consecutive days with one inch or more of rainfall downtown in more than three years left many meteorologists predicting a possible return to average water levels.

Meteorologists had hoped as recently as May that recent El Niño data signaled a potential spike in rainfall totals, but bone-dry weather patterns since then have all but nullified those expectations.


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