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Are you interested in what happened during a recent event? Check out the report below.
 
Heavy Rain/Snow on January 24-27, 2021
 
In the video: This WSR-88D (Doppler Weather Radar) loop showed a storm system from the Plains bringing showers and thunderstorms to Arkansas on January 24-25, 2021. There was snow to the north and a deadly tornado in Alabama. Another system arrived on the 27th with light snow in the northern two to three rows of counties, and light rain farther south. Data is courtesy of the College of DuPage.
 

Arkansas was in for some rain heading into the last week of January. It had been a dry month so far in much of the state, with amounts from a half inch to an inch and a half below average at many locations through the 23rd. There were a couple of storm systems on the way from the Plains, with the first system arriving on the 24th/25th.

 

Precipitation in January, 2021 (Through the 23rd)
Site Amount Normal +/- % of Normal
Fayetteville (NW AR) 1.07 2.13 -1.06 50%
Harrison (NC AR) 1.56 1.92 -0.36 81%
Jonesboro (NE AR) 0.89 2.46 -1.57 36%
Fort Smith (WC AR) 1.36 2.05 -0.69 66%
Little Rock (C AR) 1.36 2.66 -1.30 51%
West Memphis (EC AR) 1.56 2.98 -1.42 52%
Texarkana (SW AR) 3.53 2.50 +1.03 141%
El Dorado (SC AR) 2.24 3.10 -0.86 72%
Pine Bluff (SE AR) 1.67 2.76 -1.09 61%

 

It felt like spring in central and southern Arkansas at 200 pm CST on 01/25/2021. Temperatures were in the upper 60s and lower 70s. Readings were in the 40s/50s across the north. It was cooler the next afternoon, with 30s/40s in the north and 50s/60s farther south.
Temperatures at 200 pm CST (01/25)  |  Temperatures at 500 pm CST (01/26)
In the pictures: It felt like spring in central and southern Arkansas at 200 pm CST on 01/25/2021. Temperatures were in the upper 60s and lower 70s. Readings were in the 40s/50s across the north. It was cooler the next afternoon, with 30s/40s in the north and 50s/60s farther south.
 

The system brought a round of showers on the 24th, and this was followed by plenty of warmth the next day. Afternoon temperatures on the 25th were well into the 60s to lower 70s across the central and southern counties. Given springlike conditions, it was no surprise that thunderstorms were coming.

 

In the video: The satellite showed a line of showers and thunderstorms quietly crossing Arkansas during the morning/early afternoon of 01/25/2021. There was no severe weather. Thunderstorms blossomed to the east of the region after dark, and some storms were severe.
 

A line of showers and scattered thunderstorms crossed Arkansas on the 25th, but this was an all bark and no bite event. Other than areas of heavy rain, there was no severe weather reported.

 

Forty eight hour rainfall through 700 pm CST on 01/25/2021.
In the picture: Forty eight hour rainfall through 700 pm CST on 01/25/2021.
 

Rain was heaviest in the northeast in the forty eight hour period ending at 700 pm CST on the 25th, with amounts more than two inches in places. This included Corning (Clay County), Jonesboro (Craighead County), Newport (Jackson County), and Paragould (Greene County).

There was enough rain to cause minor flooding along portions of the Black, Cache, and lower White Rivers. Minor flooding was ongoing along the Ouachita River.

 

In the picture: More than a foot of snow piled up in southeast Nebraska and southwest Iowa by 12 pm CST on 01/26/2021. The reports are from the National Weather Service in Omaha, NE via Twitter.
 

To the north, it was cold enough for snow, and there was a lot of it. A foot or more of powder piled up in parts of Iowa and Nebraska, including Des Moines, IA and Omaha, NE. At the latter city, it was the snowiest day (11.9 inches on the 25th) in more than forty years (since the mid 1970s). Lincoln, NE had its heaviest January calendar day snow (14.5 inches) on record, breaking the previous high mark of 11.4 inches on the 3rd in 1971.

 

A deadly tornado (rated EF3) tore through the north side of Birmingham, AL (especially the Fultondale community) between 1030 pm and 1100 pm CST on 01/25/2021. The tornado was responsible for one fatality and at least thirty injuries.
In the picture: A deadly tornado (rated EF3) tore through the north side of Birmingham, AL (especially the Fultondale community) between 1030 pm and 1100 pm CST on 01/25/2021. The tornado was responsible for one fatality and at least thirty injuries.
 

After dark on the 25th, a Tornado Watch was posted for parts of Alabama, Mississippi, and Tennessee. While it appeared an active evening was in store, not much happened. But one storm went haywire on the north side of Birmingham, AL around 1045 pm CST, and a deadly tornado (rated EF3/150 mph peak winds) was spawned.

 

Link of Interest
More About the Fultondale, AL Tornado (from the National Weather Service in Birmingham, AL)

 

In the picture: Lumber became a projectile, and was thrown like a javelin through a bedroom wall by a tornado (rated EF3) in Fultondale, AL during the evening of 01/25/2021. The occupants escaped without injury due to a timely Tornado Warning and an alarm emitted by NOAA Weather Radio All Hazards.
 

Homes and businesses (including a hotel) were damaged or destroyed in the Fultondale, AL community. There was one fatality and at least thirty injuries.

In Leake County, MS, another storm pushed a tree onto a moving car along Natchez Trace Parkway. The driver of the vehicle was killed.

 

A storm system (ā€œLā€) borrowed moisture from the Gulf Coast (where showers and thunderstorms lingered along a stalled front) to bring chances of light rain/light snow to Arkansas by 600 am CST on 01/27/2021.
In the picture: A storm system (“L”) borrowed moisture from the Gulf Coast (where showers and thunderstorms lingered along a stalled front) to bring chances of light rain/light snow to Arkansas by 600 am CST on 01/27/2021.
 

The system that wreaked all of the havoc dragged a cold front all the way to the Gulf Coast, and the front stalled. Precipitation lingered along the front on the 26th to the south of Arkansas, and it turned a little colder locally. By 500 pm CST, temperatures were in the 30s toward the Missouri border, with 60s near the Louisiana border.

Early on the 27th, a new system was knocking on the door, but was not expected to cause as many issues as its predecessor. Even so, because the environment was colder, snow was likely north of Little Rock (Pulaski County).

 

Forty eight hour snow accumulations through 900 am CST on 01/27/2021.
In the picture: Forty eight hour snow accumulations through 900 am CST on 01/27/2021.
 

Flakes started flying before dawn on the 27th in northwest Arkansas, and spread across the northern two to three rows of counties during the morning. Mostly light rain was noted farther south.

 

Snow totals from northern into central Arkansas on 01/27/2021.
In the picture: Snow totals from northern into central Arkansas on 01/27/2021.
 

Three inches of snow accumulated at Western Grove (Newton County), with two to three inches at Mountain Home (Baxter County). Two inches of power was measured at Cushman (Independence County), Clinton (Van Buren County), Evening Shade (Sharp County), Lead Hill (Boone County), Marshall (Searcy County), Ravenden (Lawrence County), and Salem (Fulton County).

 

In the video: There was snow along Highway 62 in Mountain Home (Baxter County) during the morning of 01/27/2021. The video is courtesy of the Arkansas Department of Transportation via Twitter.
 

The snow lasted for a few hours, and then departed to the east by lunchtime. There was some slush on several roads, but travel was not greatly impacted. That is because melting occurred due to a somewhat warm ground and at/above freezing temperatures (hovering in the lower to mid 30s).

As snow moved out, a weak tornado (rated EF0) hit the airport in Tallahassee, FL during the late morning of the 27th. A small plane was flipped, and a hanger was roughed up. The airport shut down temporarily. 

 

Storm Reports
Preliminary reports of mainly snow in the Little Rock County Warning Area on January 27, 2021 (in red).
Submit a storm report.
There were numerous reports of mainly snow in northern and central Arkansas on January 27th. For a look at the reports, click here.
 
Link of Interest
Plot Reports
In the picture: Preliminary reports of mainly snow in the Little Rock County Warning Area on January 27, 2021 (in red).