Monday, April 25, 2011

Severe (Some Tornadic) Thunderstorms Pounding Arkansas

Severe thunderstorms are hammering central and northeast Arkansas at the moment, moving toward the East.  Below is a recent image from the Little Rock area radar:


Widespread wind damage, large hail and isolated (but potentially strong) tornadoes can be expected.  Tornado Warnings are currently in effect for areas within the purple polygons below:


A tornado was recently reported on the ground near Mayflower, which is Northwest of Little Rock.  Look at the extremely impressive circulation on both reflectivity and velocity radar images (below) when zoomed-in on the parent thunderstorm:



If you need help spotting the circulation, look directly between Mayflower and Vilonia, near the center of the images:



All of this activity is moving  Eastward, and will overspread the remainder of eastern Arkansas and adjacent portions of Tennessee, Mississippi and southwestern Kentucky throughout the remainder of the evening hours.

7 comments:

Shamrock said...

It's not coming as far east as Butler, Tn, though....right? Rob, these storms are scaring me.

Rob In Texas said...

Shamrock, thanks for the note. I think you're okay tonight and tomorrow morning. You'll have a threat of severe weather tomorrow afternoon and especially on Wednesday afternoon. Wednesday looks like your potential severe weather day at this point, stay tuned....

Shamrock said...

I am scared to death of a tornado. There hasn't been one here in many years, though. I live in a Mobile home that is tied down-but, I know that's not a safe place to be for a tornado..so the only place I have to go is a 2 foot ditch.

Rob In Texas said...

Shamrock, Given the choice (and I've lived in a mobile home before as well), I'd take the ditch. Statistically a much safer bet when dealing with a tornado.

Is there a community shelter or anything available further underground?

Stay tuned tomorrow for updates on what's heading your way...

Shamrock said...

Rob, I live in the Smokey Mountains-we're sort of isolated up here. There is no community shelter. We have a couple of brick stores up here that are small, one level buildings..but, the severe threat is forecasted to hit during closing time. I don't want to get into a ditch. I am afraid it will fill up with rain. I am also sort of at a disadvantage because my Husband works from 5pm-1:30am..so, how would I get somewhere anyway? It's going to be me and my 6 year old daughter here alone and I am scared to death. Tornados are not common here-the last one was in 1984? We are at a 5-6 on the Tor Con Index for Wednesday and a 4 for Tuesday. I want a plan before severe weather gets here. I know the trailer will probablywithstand winds 60-80mph since it's tied down but not a tornado. Will getting in the bathtub and covering myself with a mattress be better than a ditch? I am so afraid the ditch will be filled with water by the time any tornado would hit. Sorry for the long post. I am just scared. What do you suggest?

Rob In Texas said...

Shamrock, I certainly understand your concern. I'm sorry to say that the fact is, a mobile home is no place to be in either a severe wind or a tornado event.

A run of the mill severe storm with 50-60 mph winds would probably not threaten you, however anything stonger than that and certainly in any tornado situation your chances of survival are far greater outside of that structure, even if that means the ditch (in the typical period of time that a tornado would normally pass, it is unlikely that the ditch would be able to fill with water).

You are fortunate in that you live in an area, geographically, that is less prone to a strong tornado than say somewhere out on the Plains. If, however, you are still concerned about tornadoes and severe storms in general, you might want to look into building yourselves a below ground storm shelter, especially since nothing else seems to be available really close to you.

Keep an eye on the weather tomorrow evening & night, that currently looks to be the highest chance of severe weather in your area...

Shamrock said...

Thanks, Rob. We're in the very NE tip of the state and weather uually skirts passed us. I hope it does that today. I am watching the radar and it is currently doing just that. I'm going to be a nervous wreck tomorrow. I HATE not having anywhere to go during severe weather. I will go in the ditch if it threatens. Keep me in your prayers, please.