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September 17, 2018 7:30 AM

Side By Side Comparison Of Groundwater Levels - 2017 & Now
Rainfall amounts and patterns for the past three months have been similar to those seen throughout the Suwannee River Water Management District (SRWMD) before Hurricane Irma in 2017, but 2018 groundwater levels have been quite different.

As of the first of September 2018 in the SRWMD, 41% of SRWMD’s network of Floridan Aquifer wells with records extending back to the mid 1970’s were at or above the 90th percentile.
At the same time in 2017, only 5% of our wells had levels at or above the 90th percentile.
In late August four District wells reached record levels. Check out the attached graphic for a side-by-side comparison of groundwater levels for 2017 and 2018.


Groundwater in North Florida nearing record-breaking highs before major storms
– New Aquifer Alert system

August 1, 2018 -Latest Available Map by SRWMD

Staff Reports

According to a notice from the Suwannee River Water Management District (District), residents in North Florida need to be aware that groundwater levels are already reaching an historic high even before any significant weather systems reach us and residents in low lying areas may need to prepare for flooding.

Groundwater levels across most counties in North Florida are nearing record-breaking highs. These high levels increase the risk of groundwater flooding and flash flooding if a significant rain event occurs.

Last year Hurricane Irma resulted in flooding across most counties of North Florida and groundwater levels were notably lower than they are now. With several major storms developing in the Atlantic, the SRWMD is working to be proactive in getting the message out to local citizens. Public safety is their utmost concern.

With aquifer levels reaching record-breaking highs in some areas, the District has released a new alert system to keep local governments, residents and stakeholders informed on the changing groundwater conditions.

“In some areas of the District we continue to see flooding that began in early July, which is very unusual especially since there have been no tropical systems yet,” said Fay Baird, senior hydrologist for the District. “In many places the Floridan Aquifer is more saturated than it has been for numerous years.”

Aquifer Alert, the new alert system, allows users to sign up for automatic notifications through text and/or email whenever new groundwater or hydrological information is posted. The District is currently updating the information twice per week.

Over half of the 88 long-term groundwater gauges across the District are showing groundwater levels above the 90th percentile – the highest on record in many areas. High groundwater levels increase the risk for flooding if a major rainfall event were to occur because the ground is already saturated.

“If a significant weather system occurs over our already-wet conditions, we will very likely see localized flooding in many areas across the District,” said Baird.

Although no major storms have been predicted for the area, residents should take action to get prepared now. 

The District recommends residents take the following precautions:

Make a plan for an alternate exit route in the event your main route is flooded.

Identify a location to move low-lying valuables and animals to higher ground.

Clear drainageways and ditches of fallen trees or debris.
Become familiar with past flood water levels in your area so you have a reference point.

For more information on water level information throughout the District or to sign up for Aquifer Alerts, visit 

For more information about the District, visit or follow us on Facebook and Twitter, search @SRWMD.

The mission of the Suwannee River Water Management District is to protect and manage water resources using science-based solutions to support natural systems and the needs of the public.

The District holds true to the belief of water for nature, water for people. Headquartered in Live Oak, Florida, the District serves 15 surrounding north-central Florida counties.