Tyler (KETK) — Hot temperatures, low humidities and little rainfall over the past few weeks have caused drought conditions to expand through East Texas.
"It looks like moderate conditions are further up to the north, closer to the Red River," said KETK Meteorologist Katie Green. "Most of the rest of us are in severe drought conditions."
Even though we've had a few showers here and there, in areas of Tyler and Longview, we're anywhere from 12 to 20 inches behind on rainfall.
The National Weather Service reports some areas are seeing levels comparable to the drought of 2011.
The result: a continued drop in ponds and lakes.
"For the last several years, we've had a real problem with the lake levels," said John Cross. "It just doesn't seem to come back up."
Cross has lived on Lake Tyler since 1992.
"I usually have about 7 feet of water under my pier when the lake is full," Cross said. "I've got about a foot and a half now."
With sandbars popping up across the lake, Cross is seeing more and more accidents this summer.
"July the 4th weekend, I saw two boats run aground down there by our house," Cross said.
City officials say while we wait for Mother Nature to catch up, everyone should continue to be aware and use caution around shallow conditions.
Lake Tyler is currently more than four feet below normal.
Lake Palestine is about one foot below normal.
The last time it was at the normal level was January of 2010, according to Greg Morgan with the City of Tyler.
During the drought of 2011, Lake Tyler was almost 8 feet below normal.