February Rainfall Looks Bleak, Putting L.A. on Track for Exceptionally Dry Start to Year

A persistent high-pressure ridge over the eastern Pacific Ocean has kept wet weather at bay for much of January and early February in California. (Credit: Paul Duginski / Los Angeles Times)

A persistent high-pressure ridge over the eastern Pacific Ocean has kept wet weather at bay for much of January and early February in California. (Credit: Paul Duginski / Los Angeles Times)

Swaths of Southern California, including downtown Los Angeles, could be heading toward one of the driest combined starts to a year on record if the Golden State doesn’t start getting some rain, the National Weather Service said Thursday.

While precipitation in November and December provided a solid start to winter across the state, a persistent high-pressure ridge hovering over the eastern Pacific Ocean has kept wet weather at bay for much of January and early February, said David Sweet, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Oxnard.

“It’s been successful in diverting all of the Pacific storms into the Pacific Northwest up near Seattle,” Sweet said. “Overall for January and February, we’ve been far below normal in terms of rainfall.”

Downtown Los Angeles received 0.32 inches of rain in January. So far in February, which is typically the wettest month of the year, the area has received just a trace of precipitation. Typically, downtown Los Angeles receives 6.92 inches of rain in January and February, according to the weather service.

Read the full story on LATimes.com.

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