Drought warning spurs recommendations
Kansas Water Office issued drought emergency, warning, and watch declarations Friday for every county in the state, including Marion and nearby counties.
Marion, Chase, and Morris were declared to be in a drought warning status.
Butler, Harvey, and McPherson were declared to be in a more serious drought emergency status.
Dickinson County was declared to be in a less serious drought watch.
Marcy Hostetler, Marion County’s interim emergency manager, recommends reducing household water usage by fixing leaks, using water-efficient appliances and plumbing fixtures, taking shorter showers, turning off water while brushing teeth or shaving, and running the washer only when it has a full load.
She also recommends people follow local guidance for outdoor recreation. Park hiking trail areas sometimes modify services during a drought. Rivers could be closed for fishing and boating if water flow is low.
To reduce fire risk, Hostetler suggests removing dead vegetation and other flammable materials from around homes, pruning tree limbs so branches are a few feet above the ground, and keeping construction material, trash, and woodpiles at least 30 feet from buildings.
Above-normal temperatures since April 2021 and below-normal rainfall created current drought conditions. Weather forecasts through the end of the year indicate drought conditions could persist.