The heat was on. Rain was scarce, and drought expanded across Georgia in May.

The state got a reprieve from the waves of severe weather, which swept through in April, but scattered wind and hail damage did occur.

Temperatures were above normal everywhere in Georgia for a fourth straight month. In Atlanta, the monthly average temperature was 70.9 degrees F (1.1 degrees above normal), in Athens 70.4 degrees (1.3 degrees above normal), Columbus 74 degrees (1.7 degrees above normal), Macon 72.3 degrees (1.3 degrees above normal), Savannah 75 degrees (2.2 degrees above normal), Brunswick 75.3 degrees (1.6 degrees above normal), Alma 74.6 degrees (0.8 degree above normal), Valdosta 75.4 degrees (2.7 degrees above normal) and Augusta 71.9 degrees (1.6 degrees above normal).

This spring has been the second warmest in Columbus since 1948, the ninth warmest in Atlanta since 1878, and the tenth warmest in Savannah since 1871, when records began at each location.

Several record daily high and low temperatures were broken. Many more record highs and a few record lows were tied.

Athens set a record low temperature May 5, when a reading of 37 degrees broke the old record of 38 degrees set in 1940. Light frost was reported in a few locations, but did not cause damage to crops.

Macon reported 96 degrees May 12, breaking the old record of 95 degrees set in 1967. Savannah recorded 99 degrees, breaking the old record of 97 degrees set in 1956. Alma and Columbus broke or tied daily high temperature records on seven and eight days, respectively, during the month.

April was very dry across most of Georgia, with the exception of the northern quarter of the state. The driest areas were the south-central and southwest regions. Most of the rainfall this past month came from thunderstorm activity, which is highly variable.

The highest monthly total precipitation from National Weather Service reporting stations was 2.93 inches in Atlanta (1.02 inches below normal). The lowest was in Brunswick at 0.58 inch (2.11 inches below normal). Valdosta received 1.20 inches (2.04 inches below normal), Athens 0.82 inch (3.04 inches above normal), Alma 0.85 inch (2.19 inches below normal), Columbus 0.65 inch (2.97 inches below normal), Macon 0.66 inch (2.32 inches below normal), Savannah 0.77 inch (2.84 inches below normal) and Augusta 2.50 inches (0.45 inch above normal).