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Turning Stormy in the Northwest

An active fall storm pattern developing in the Pacific Northwest this week will bring areas of heavy rain and high elevation snow. Northern California will benefit from rainfall this week that will aid firefighters given the recent large wildfires. Read More >


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April 2016

  • Tulsa: No daily records were set or tied this month.
  • Tulsa: The 2015-16 cold season ranked as the 19th least snowy (since records began in 1900-01) with 3.0" (tied 1902-03, 1907-08).
  • Fort Smith: The 2015-16 cold season ranked as the 5th least snowy (since records began in 1883-84) with only a Trace of snow (tied 2008-09, 2003-04, 2001-02, 1997-98, 1992-93, 1991-92, 1962-63, 1956-57).
  • Using the radar-derived estimated observed precipitation from the RFCs, rainfall totals for April 2016 ranged from 2” to near 10”. A large portion of the area received 4”-8” of rain this month. This corresponds to 50%-90% of the normal April rain across portions of Osage, Washington, and Adair Counties in northeast OK and Benton, Washington, Franklin, Madison, and Carroll Counties in northwest AR. The remainder of eastern OK and west central AR received 110% to 200% of the normal April rain.
  • While portions of the area saw below normal rainfall in April 2016, a large portion of eastern OK and west central AR received above normal precipitation, resulting in some flooding this month.  5 river forecast points had minor or moderate flooding this month.
  • A line of severe thunderstorms moved through eastern Oklahoma and northwestern Arkansas during the evening of April 26th and early morning hours of April 27th.  Very strong low-level wind shear and moderately strong instability ahead of the line promoted the development of several tornadoes from some of the storms embedded in the line, as well as damaging wind gusts.  Information about this event can be found at
  • According to the Drought Monitor from May 3, 2016, there were no drought conditions present in eastern OK and northwest AR. However, abnormally dry conditions were present across portions of Washington, Benton, Carroll, and Madison Counties in Arkansas.
  • According to the Oklahoma Climatological Survey, April 2016 was the 21st wettest for northeast Oklahoma, the 23rd wettest for east central Oklahoma, and the 7th wettest for southeast Oklahoma. Records go back to 1921.  For the Year-to-Date period Jan. 1-Apr. 30, 2016,  northeast Oklahoma ranked as the 36th driest, east central Oklahoma was the 47th driest, and southeast Oklahoma was the 8th wettest period.  For the last 365 days (May 2, 2015-April 30, 2016), northeast Oklahoma was the 2nd wettest and both east central and southeast Oklahoma were the record wettest.
  • The Climate Prediction Center (CPC) outlook for May 2016 (issued April 30, 2016), indicates an enhanced chance of above median precipitation across all of eastern OK and northwest AR. This outlook also calls for equal chances for above, near, and below normal temperatures across eastern OK and northwest AR. This outlook is based on both short- and extended-range weather forecasts, which show an enhanced chance for below normal temperatures for the first half of the month and above normal temperatures for the second half, resulting in an equal chance for above, near, and below normal temperatures. Considerations are also taken into account from the weakening El Niño and recent soil moisture conditions.
  • For the 3-month period May-June-July 2016, CPC is forecasting an equal chance for above, near, and below normal temperatures and a slightly enhanced chance for above median precipitation across all of eastern OK and northwest AR (outlook issued April 21, 2016). This outlook is based primarily on both statistical and dynamical forecast tools, soil moisture conditions, and residual impacts from El Niño. The chance of developing La Niña conditions exceeds 50% by late Summer 2016.
  • According to CPC, El Niño conditions continue to weaken, with the weekly analysis showing moderate strength currently, and is still expected to transition to neutral conditions during the late spring or early summer 2016. An El Niño Advisory and a La Niña Watch are in effect.