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Experts concerned how warm winter will affect water supply in spring, summer

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Posted at 6:10 PM, Feb 16, 2015
and last updated 2015-02-16 20:10:03-05

SALT LAKE CITY -- Monday marks the 41st day in a row the Salt Lake Valley has hit above-average temperatures.

This warm spell has the National Weather Service re-writing the record books and hydrologists worrying about Utah’s snow pack.

Weather experts say this means trouble for water in the spring and summer months.

"When you look at the water year of 2015, anything that could go wrong really has gone wrong," said hydrologist Brian McInerney with the National Weather Service.

From low snow packs and dry soils to a lack of major storms and record-breaking heat, Mcinerney said, in his 26 years as a hydrologist he's never seen a winter quite like this in Utah.

"When you look at all of these considered, and wrap it up into a water supply equation, what we have is water supply numbers that are very grim," McInerney said.

Utah’s weather conditions are six weeks ahead of schedule and that means trouble for Utah’s snow pack.

According to the NWS, this is the least snow the valley has received since 1885.

“Unless we can get some moisture in here we're going to be looking at a fairly bleak situation come spring and summer,” said meteorologist Mike Seaman with NWS.

Officials with NWS add it doesn't look like conditions will change.

“It’s not out of the question but the further we get into February and March it starts looking bleaker and bleaker,” Seaman said.

Officials with NWS say if the Salt Lake Valley stays on this pace we will have the warmest winter on record.

“One or two storms really aren't going to do it -- we need multiple storms really for the next two months -- every third day that kind of thing, heavy moisture cold weather,” McInerney said.