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Persistent rainfall in April helped shrink the drought footprint for the contiguous U.S. to the lowest level since the nationwide Drought Monitor program began in 2000, NOAA reported.

The average precipitation total for April was 3.43 inches, 0.91 inch above the 20th-century average, making it the second wettest April on record in the U.S. Above-average precipitation was reported across the Northwest, Central Plains, Mid-Mississippi Valley, Great Lakes and Mid-Atlantic.

The total year-to-date precipitation for the Lower 48 states was 11.46 inches, 1.99 inches above average, making it the fifth wettest YTD period on record, according to NOAA.

U.S. Drought Monitor valid May 9, 2017

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