Drought conditions across Arkansas improved in the last week as rainfall made its way through the state, officials said.
The weekly drought monitor, which reflects conditions through Tuesday morning, shows less than 2 percent of Arkansas is now under an extreme drought, the second-worst category. That's down from more than 14 percent a week earlier when the extreme drought covered much of far southern and southeast Arkansas.
John Robinson, warning coordination meteorologist for the National Weather Service in North Little Rock, said the drought eased thanks to "substantial rain" in the state Friday into Saturday and additional showers in the southeast Tuesday.
The extreme drought is now limited to a large swath of Union County and parts of Bradley and Calhoun counties.
About 15.5 percent of the state is under at least a severe drought, down from more than 29 percent a week earlier. And nearly 32 percent of Arkansas is still under at least a moderate drought, down from about 39.5 percent last week.
It's a far cry from drought conditions a year ago, when 8.74 percent of Arkansas was under an exceptional drought, the worst category, and more than 40 percent of the state was under an extreme drought.
A seasonal outlook released Thursday by the weather service says the drought in Arkansas is likely to remain in place but improve.