Monday, May 25, 2015

More Severe Weather And Flooding Likely

11AM Monday Update... We still have several days left to go this May and the rainfall amounts are nothing short of staggering, especially across western Arkansas.  It's not only the wettest May in Fort Smith weather history, it's the wettest month EVER!  So far, Little Rock has had 6.01'' of rain and that's well short of breaking into the top 10.  So far this spring, Little Rock has received 19.54'' and that's getting close to breaking into the top 10 wettest springs on record.  I kinda doubt we do that.

Here are May rainfall amounts as of early Monday May 25th

Fort Smith 17.75''
Fayetteville 11.62''
Mt. Ida 11.18''
DeQueen 10.85''
Hot Springs 9.68''
North Little Rock 8.30''
Russellville 7.39''
Searcy 7.00''
Little Rock 6.01''
Texarkana 5.95''


A very well defined area of low pressure aloft will move through the region tonight.  With so much moisture and instability in place, a round of severe storms with flooding rainfall will become likely, especially over western Arkansas.  With every drop of rain, new rainfall records are being established.  For instance, Fort Smith has had more than 16 inches of rain this month alone and it's the wettest month EVER for them.

This will only aggravate the flooding situation on rivers and streams.  If you live in a low lying area, PLEASE pay close attention to the forecast and conditions late today into tonight.  The flash flood watch continues and I have strong feeling the Storm Prediction Center will place much of Arkansas under a tornado watch later today.

Sunday, May 24, 2015

Flooding and Severe Weather

I think western Arkansas is a rain magnet this year.  It would be nice to be able to share some with California.  The biggest threat over the next few days will be flooding, but there will also be the threat for some severe weather.  Damaging winds and an isolated tornado or two will be possible.

We have 2 rounds of rain and storms to deal with over the next 2 days.  There may be a break on Memorial Day for awhile.  This video goes over timing and specifics.

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Early Season Heat Outlook and Tornado Season Winding Down?

The past 60 days have been incredibly wet for most of Arkansas, especially western areas of the state.  I know the heavy rain is causing major problems for all the obvious reasons, but the more water in the ground, the less likely we'll hit 100 degrees early this summer.  The suns energy will focus on evaporation before it can be efficiently heat us to triple digit heat.  The prospects for more rainfall next week looks good and some of it could be heavy.

While severe weather can happen every month, our primary severe weather season is coming to an end soon and I hope I didn't just jinx it.  You must remember, we had a tornado outbreak at the very end of May a couple years ago and the state's 2nd biggest tornado outbreak occurred in early June in the 1910's.  So while statistically it's coming to an end, we still can have significant severe weather.

One more piece of good news... an area of high pressure will move in Thursday and Friday.  This will bring one of the coolest and driest starts to Riverfest in a long time.  We're talking about highs only near 70 with low humidity values.  Unfortunately, rain chances come back Sunday and especially Monday.

Forecast dewpoint values Thursday look low!  That should continue into Friday too with high temperatures only near 70 with rain chances less than 20 percent.  It's a much needed break because more rain will be possible next week.

Possible rainfall amounts Sunday into Monday morning could be around 1-2'' for western Arkansas.  Not good.
Rainfall amounts Monday morning into next Wednesday morning could be around 1-1.5'' more.  Again, not good.

60 day rainfall estimates by radar indicates most of the state has seen at least 10 inches with some western areas between 15 and 25 inches.

Statistically, May is the 2nd most active month for tornadoes with a sharp decrease by June.  We can't rule out tornadoes, but the chance does decrease soon.