Thursday, March 03, 2016

Spring Soaker Or Are Models Nothing But Jokers?

All of the models are sending us a strong signal for a major rain event next week (Tuesday - Friday) along with some severe weather.  So is it a done deal?  To quote the great Lee Corso, "not so fast my friend."  While it's definitely within the realm of possibility with almost unanimous support from all the guidance we use, I have seen these situations head south.  Pun intended!

I was talking to meteorologist Ryan Vaughan at our sister station, KAIT, in Jonesboro.   We both agree how odd it is all the models show so much rain.  I start thinking what could go wrong?  As meteorologists, we see things like this coming, and then all of the sudden something happens and people are left asking, "where is all that rain you forecast?"  Once again, it's hard to ignore all the data and all the data shows heavy rainfall along an axis oriented from southwest to northeast.  At this time, the highest chance for that heaviest rain axis will be along the I-30 to 67/167 corridor eastward with lesser amounts northwest.

So what could go wrong?  A couple things.  What if the axis of heaviest rainfall sets up east of the state?  What if it backs further to the west.  The latter seems to be very unlikely.  One other consideration, what if a large area of thunderstorms along the Gulf coast robs the significant moisture from moving into Arkansas so instead of 6'' +, it's much less.

Once again, ALL of the models show the real distinct possibility for flooding rainfall, but I want to use this blog to let you know what the "what ifs " are at this point.  It would be wise at this time to prepare for heavy rainfall and even some severe weather.  I'll keep you updated here, social media, and on Channel 7.

Models below are courtesy of

Here are the last 4 runs of the GFS and this helps to illustrate one of my points.   Where does the axis of heaviest rainfall set up?  You can see it's shifting a little with each run.  BTW, that purple area is 10'' plus!  AS I ALWAYS SAY, THESE ARE MODELS AND NOT FORECASTS.  So now you see our concern for a very heavy rain event.  The models show the most likely area will be along and east of the I-30/67-167 corridor with lesser amounts northwest.  As we get closer to next Tuesday and Wednesday, we'll fine tune the forecast and hope it's not this much rain!!!!


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