ELMIRA, N.Y. (WETM) – Dry weather put a toll on a lot of things in the Twin Tiers, including the Chemung River.

According to the New York Department of Environmental Conservation, a drought watch has recently been issued for the Southern Tier. This means residents should prepare for worse conditions just in case and limit water usage as much as possible.

The Elmira Waterboard also suggests that residents conserve their water intake. The flow down the river is now less than normal, which increases the chances of not having enough water for the Waterboard to pump.

“The current flow down the river is about 168 cubic feet a second,” said Mark LaDouce, general manager for Elmira Waterboard. “What we use is about 5 and a half million gallons a day which equates to 8.5 cubic feet a second.”

This drought is nothing new to the region. The Southern Tier has been facing abnormally dry conditions since at least the middle of July.

A couple weeks back, moderate drought conditions were reported in the Southern Tier for the first time since November 2020. 71 percent, 79 percent, and 100 percent of Chemung County, Steuben County, and Schuyler County respectively are now facing a moderate drought.

Despite how dry it has been, this is not the longest nor the most extreme drought the Southern Tier has faced so far. Extreme drought conditions were reported across the region from August to October back in 2016.

Looking ahead to next week, the Twin Tiers may finally get the much-needed rain to potentially end this drought.