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Monthly Storm Reports and Storm Data
Storm Reports
Are you interested in what happened during a recent event? Check out the report below.
 
Severe Storms/Heavy Rain on January 10-11, 2020
 
500 millibar (18,000 feet) maps showed a storm system ("LOW") intensifying across the southern United States in the forty eight hour period ending at 600 am CST on 01/11/2020.
500 mb Map at 600 am CST (01/09)  |  500 mb Map at 600 am CST (01/10)
500 mb Map at 600 am CST (01/11)  |  Loop
In the pictures: 500 millibar (18,000 feet) maps showed a storm system ("LOW") intensifying across the southern United States in the forty eight hour period ending at 600 am CST on 01/11/2020.
 

It felt like spring on January 10th, with high temperatures in the 60s to lower 70s. As the day began, a powerful storm system was looming to the west in New Mexico. Moisture levels were on the rise ahead of the system. It was a perfect setup for severe weather and flash flooding.

 

In the picture: There was an enhanced to moderate risk of severe weather in the twenty four hour period ending at 600 am CST on 01/11/2020. The forecast is courtesy of the Storm Prediction Center.
 

In fact, the Storm Prediction Center in Norman, OK called for a moderate risk of severe weather over the southern half of Arkansas, and an enhanced risk farther north.

 

 

When risk levels are this high (which is rare), an outbreak of severe storms is usually the result. In this case, widespread wind damage and isolated tornadoes were expected. The National Weather Service in Little Rock (Pulaski County) tried to draw attention to the magnitude of the situation by using wording such as "hurricane force winds" and "this is serious" in its messaging to the public.

 

A Rare Moderate Risk

On January 9th, the Storm Prediction Center (SPC) in Norman OK had a moderate risk of severe weather in far southwest Arkansas, northeast Texas, and northwest Louisiana on the 10th (a Day 2 forecast). This was only the fourth time a Day 2 moderate risk was issued in January, and the first time in six years. The moderate risk area was expanded markedly the next day (a Day 1 forecast). This information is from Dr. Patrick Marsh of SPC (via Twitter).

 

In the video: The satellite showed thunderstorms blossoming in Oklahoma and Texas during the afternoon of 01/10/2020. The storms headed into northwest Arkansas before sunset, and crossed the rest of the state during the overnight hours.
 

Strong to severe thunderstorms began developing in Oklahoma and Texas during the afternoon of the 10th. The storms gelled into a line and tracked into northwest Arkansas shortly after 400 pm CST. There was golf ball size hail just southeast of Decatur (Benton County), and quarter size hail at Siloam Springs (Benton County).

 

Simulated radar showed a line of thunderstorms sweeping through Arkansas mostly during the overnight hours of 01/10/2020 and early the next morning. There was some indication of scattered storms ahead of the line in western sections of the state early in the event.
In the pictures: Simulated radar showed a line of thunderstorms sweeping through Arkansas mostly during the overnight hours of 01/10/2020 and early the next morning. There was some indication of scattered storms ahead of the line in western sections of the state early in the event.
 

Ahead of the line, scattered supercells (storms with rotating updrafts) popped up west of Little Rock (Pulaski County). These storms were monitored very closely for the possibility of tornadoes.

 

A supercell (storm with rotating updrafts and exhibiting features such as a hook echo and strong rotation) was south of Subiaco (Logan County) at 740 pm CST on 01/10/2020. The supercell preceded a line of storms building into western Arkansas from Oklahoma.
Reflectivity at 740 pm CST (01/10)  |  Storm Relative Velocity at 740 pm CST (01/10)
More About Rotation
In the pictures: A supercell (storm with rotating updrafts and exhibiting features such as a hook echo and strong rotation) was south of Subiaco (Logan County) at 740 pm CST on 01/10/2020. The supercell preceded a line of storms building into western Arkansas from Oklahoma. 
 

At 740 pm CST, a tornado (rated EF2) was spawned southwest of Midway (Logan County). The tornado cut close to a fourteen mile path before dissipating northeast of Scranton (Logan County).

 

A tornado (rated EF2) was confirmed in Logan County during the evening of 01/10/2020.
In the picture: A tornado (rated EF2) was confirmed in Logan County during the evening of 01/10/2020.
 

Along the way, the tornado caused extensive damage. Several structures were destroyed, including barns, chicken houses, and outbuildings. The roof of a home was also removed. There was nobody inside because everyone moved to an underground shelter.

 

Link of Interest
Video of Tornado Damage in Logan County (courtesy of Brian Emfinger via Twitter)

 

Several tornadoes (rated EF1/EF2) damaged or destroyed structures north and east of Midway and Scranton (both in Logan County), near Seaton (Lonoke County), and around Jerome (Drew County) from the evening of 01/10/2020 through the wee hours of the next morning.
Home and Surroundings in Disarray North of Midway (Logan County)
Inside of Home Missing Roof North of Midway (Logan County)
Outbuildings Destroyed East of Scranton (Logan County)
Storage Shed Thrown Into Trees and Destroyed Near Seaton (Lonoke County)
Silo Mangled Near Jerome (Drew County)
In the pictures: Several tornadoes (rated EF1/EF2) damaged or destroyed structures north and east of Midway and Scranton (both in Logan County), near Seaton (Lonoke County), and around Jerome (Drew County) from the evening of 01/10/2020 through the wee hours of the next morning.
 

Nine other mostly weak tornadoes (eight rated EF1/one rated EF2) were confirmed across the state through the wee hours of the 11th. Two of these tornadoes were in the Little Rock County Warning Area near Seaton (Lonoke County) and Jerome (Drew County). The former tornado blew in a grain bin and tossed a shed into nearby trees. The latter tornado mangled a silo. Trees were uprooted or snapped, and utility poles were taken out.

 

Link of Interest
Damage Survey Information

 

Eleven tornadoes (rated EF1/EF2) were counted across Arkansas on January 10-11, 2020.
In the picture: Eleven tornadoes (rated EF1/EF2) were counted across Arkansas on January 10-11, 2020.
 

Similar damage was noted with a tornado in the Tulsa County Warning Area three to four miles east-southeast of Cecil (Franklin County). Seven tornadoes were counted in the Jackson County Warning Area from West Crossett to Hamburg and Montrose (all in Ashley County) eastward to Lake Village (Chicot County) and on into western Mississippi. Damage was a little more substantial, with a handful of mobile homes dismantled, roofs torn up on homes and a couple of churches, and a metal high tension electric line yanked to the ground. At least two injuries were reported.

 

Giant Pine Tree in Arkansas Gone

The Morris Pine was around for at least three centuries in the Levi Wilcoxon Demonstration Forest south of Hamburg (Ashley County). This was regarded as one of the largest and oldest pine trees in Arkansas. Sadly, the tree did not make it through the storm early on the 11th. A tornado (rated EF1) was the culprit.

 

There was widespread wind damage, some large hail, and isolated tornadoes from the southern Plains to the mid-Atlantic states in the forty eight hour period ending at 600 am CST on 01/12/2020. The graphic is courtesy of the Storm Prediction Center.
In the picture: There was widespread wind damage, some large hail, and isolated tornadoes from the southern Plains to the mid-Atlantic states in the forty eight hour period ending at 600 am CST on 01/12/2020. The graphic is courtesy of the Storm Prediction Center.
 

Otherwise, this was a massive damaging wind episode. Wind gusts from 60 to 90 mph pounded parts of the state. Trees and/or power lines were downed at Yellville (Marion County), Henderson (Baxter County), Elizabeth (Fulton County), Melbourne (Izard County), Leslie (Searcy County), a few miles west of Arkadelphia (Clark County), Malvern (Hot Spring County), Judsonia (White County), Fordyce (Dallas County), Pine Bluff (Jefferson County), Cotton Plant (Woodruff County), Joiner (Mississippi County), Monticello (Drew County), St. Charles (Arkansas County), and Watson (Desha County). Some fallen trees landed on homes. Seven tractor trailers were blown over on Interstate 40 just east of Wheatley (St. Francis County). Wind recording equipment measured a 74 mph gust at Fargo (Monroe County), and a 71 mph gust at the University of Arkansas at Monticello (Drew County).

 

In the videos: This is what happens (lots of flying debris) when windows are compromised by a tornado, such as in this hallway and office at a high school in Westville, SC on 01/11/2020. Fortunately, nobody was at the facility when the tornado (rated EF2) arrived. The videos are courtesy of the National Weather Service in Columbia, SC via Twitter.
 

Outside of the state, a tornado (rated EF1) downed a tree onto a mobile home southwest of Nacogdoches, TX. One person was killed. A long track tornado (rated EF2/41 miles) went from near Bossier City, LA to Arcadia, LA, and mowed down a considerable number of trees and structures. Two more fatalities occurred in a mobile home. At Oil City, LA, a tree fell on a home and killed one of the occupants. To the east, three people lost their lives due to a tornado (rated EF2) in Carrollton, AL. From east Texas to the Carolinas and Virginia, there were over 1,000 reports of wind damage!

 

Twenty four hour rainfall through 600 am CST on 01/11/2020. Amounts exceeded four inches in places.
Rain in Arkansas  |  Rain Across the Region
Alternate Rain in Arkansas Based on Observer Reports
In the pictures: Twenty four hour rainfall through 600 am CST on 01/11/2020. Amounts exceeded four inches in places.
 

Back at home, torrential rain accompanied the wind. More than four inches of precipitation dumped in spots. Twenty four hour amounts through 600 am CST on the 11th included 5.00 inches at Batesville (Independence County), 4.30 inches at Bogg Springs (Polk County), 4.20 inches at Waldron (Scott County), 4.05 inches at Sparkman (Dallas County), 3.90 inches at Parks (Scott County) and Subiaco (Logan County), 3.83 inches at Cabot (Lonoke County), 3.78 inches at Booneville (Logan County), 3.75 inches at Big Fork (Polk County), 3.59 inches at Calamine (Sharp County), 3.52 inches at Pine Ridge (Montgomery County), 3.50 inches at Newport (Jackson County), and 3.46 inches at Little Rock (Pulaski County).

There were many reports of water over roads. In Little Rock (Pulaski County), at least fifteen rescues were performed after motorists drove into high water. Cars were stranded in Fort Smith (Sebastian County) and Rogers (Benton County). Streets were impassible in Jonesboro (Craighead County). Highway 80 between Hon and Waldron (both in Scott County) was closed due to flooding. The same happened along Highway 115 near Jesup (Lawrence County), along Highways 62 and 175 at Cherokee Village (Sharp County), along Highway 224 south of Swifton (Jackson County), along Highway 13 north of McRae (White County), and along Highways 54 and 83 south of Gould (Lincoln County). Lots of county roads were flooded and/or washed out.

 

There was minor flooding along the Black, Cache, Ouachita, and lower White Rivers on 01/13/2020.
In the picture: There was minor flooding along the Black, Cache, Ouachita, and lower White Rivers on 01/13/2020.
 

Because vegetation was dormant and consuming little ground water, runoff rates were high and rivers responded by going up. Minor flooding resulted on a number of tributaries including the Black, Cache, Eleven Point, Fourche LaFave, Ouachita, Petit Jean, Spring, and White Rivers. The same was true on the Arkansas River west of Dardanelle (Yell County).

 

Snowfall in the forty eight hour period ending at 600 am CST on 01/12/2020.
In the picture: Snowfall in the forty eight hour period ending at 600 am CST on 01/12/2020.
 

It turned colder on the 11th. During the afternoon, temperatures in the Ozark Mountains of the northwest were in the 20s to lower 30s, with wind chill index values in the teens. There was enough leftover moisture for some light snow. In general, there was little to no accumulation, with a dusting at a few locations. At Fayetteville (Washington County), 0.3 inch of snow was measured.

 

Storm Reports
Preliminary reports of severe weather, flash flooding, heavy rain, and wintry precipitation in the Little Rock County Warning Area on January 10-11, 2020 (in red).
Submit a storm report.
There were numerous reports of damaging winds, tornadoes, heavy rain/flash flooding, and wintry precipitation on January 10th/11th. For a look at the reports, click here.
 
Link of Interest
Plot Reports
In the picture: Preliminary reports of severe weather, flash flooding, heavy rain, and wintry precipitation in the Little Rock County Warning Area on January 10-11, 2020 (in red).