Thursday, December 19, 2013

Saturday Soaker and Severe


I really have no changes to what I posted yesterday.  As we get closer to this significant storm system, the confidence is increasing we will experience very heavy rainfall and some severe weather.  The one question that still need to be answered is... how much severe weather?  Instability, the fuel for thunderstorms, is in question.  There will be a ton of clouds and rain around, so that may limit the potential for extensive severe weather.  If there are breaks in the clouds and some more heating, watch out!  Regardless, there will be some instability and the amount of sheer in the atmosphere will support a severe threat.

Here are the threats in order from high to low....
  1. HEAVY RAINFALL (FLOODING)
  2. SEVERE THUNDERSTORMS (HIGH WINDS)
  3. ISOLATED TORNADOES 
  4. WINTER WEATHER (NORTHWEST BEFORE ENDING).  NOT SIGNIFICANT.
 This will all happen while many of you are our shopping or traveling.  We urge you to stay updated with the latest weather information throughout Saturday.
The Storm Prediction Center has placed most of the Channel 7 viewing area in a "slight risk" for severe weather.  I have outlined the area that may have somewhat of a higher risk (but still slight at this time).  The main impact as far as severe weather is concerned is along and southeast of the surface low track.  I suspect a line of thunderstorms with high winds will be likely.  There could be an area or two along the line which rotates so that will need to be watched.  Any storm which develops ahead of that line will also have the potential to rotate.  The time frame Saturday will be early/mid afternoon to mid evening.




A flash flood watch is in effect for much of the northwest half of the state with at least 2'' of rain expected.  Some places could receive 4'' or more.   This includes most of the metro including Little Rock, Benton, Bryant, and Conway.
The Weather Prediction Center shows the NW half of the state receiving 2-5'' of rain with lesser amounts southeast.
The European model backs up fairly well what the WPC has put out.  The Euro is indicating an area just west and north of the metro which could have 5'' or more.  This can easily cause flash flooding.

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