Climate Data
Yearly Reports
Interested in what kind of weather occurred in a recent year? Check out the most memorable events below.
 
Severe Weather on February 5, 2008 (Pg2)
 
The WSR-88D (Doppler Weather Radar) showed a tornadic supercell (storm with rotating uprafts) near Clinton (Van Buren County) with a squall line moving into central Arkansas at 536 pm CST on 02/05/2008. By the late afternoon of the 5th, tornadic supercells (storms with rotating updrafts) were followed by a squall line along the front...with strong to damaging winds.
In the picture: The WSR-88D (Doppler Weather Radar) showed a tornadic supercell (storm with rotating uprafts) near Clinton (Van Buren County) with a squall line moving into central Arkansas at 536 pm CST on 02/05/2008.

 

At Hot Springs (Garland County), there was a 53 mph gust at 605 pm CST...and a 67 mph gust at Little Rock Adams Field (Pulaski County) at 713 pm CST.

 

 

After the front and squall line exited eastern sections of the state (by 10 pm CST), much colder air followed. Moisture wrapped around the storm system, with light snow toward the Missouri border early on the 6th.
In the picture: The pattern as of 9 pm CST on 02/05/2008...with a cold front sweeping through Arkansas with strong to severe thunderstorms. The front was followed by much cooler air.

 

Damage Surveys/Pictures
A tornado approached Clinton (Van Buren County) from the southwest toward sunset on 02/05/2008. The National Weather Service at Little Rock (Pulaski County) surveyed tornado damage caused on the 5th.
In the picture: A tornado approached Clinton (Van Buren County) from the southwest toward sunset on 02/05/2008. The photo is courtesy of Josh Smith.

 

One long track tornado was confirmed, with a track length of 122 miles. An aerial survey was performed (with the Civil Air Patrol) on the 9th to determine if the path was continuous...and it was! A tornado rated EF4 tracked through portions of Yell, Pope, Conway, Van Buren, Stone and Sharp Counties on 02/05/2008.
In the picture: A tornado rated EF4 tracked through portions of Yell, Pope, Conway, Van Buren, Stone and Sharp Counties on 02/05/2008.

 

The starting point of the tornado was 5.6 miles east-southeast of Centerville (Yell County). It finally dissipated 3.2 miles northeast of Highland (Sharp County).

The rating for the tornado was initially at least an EF3. A member of a Quick Response Team (QRT) visited Arkansas on the 8th to look at some of the worst damage along the track. In the end, the rating was upgraded to EF4.

 

A tornado rated EF2 tracked through portions of Marion and Baxter Counties on 02/05/2008. Damage in Baxter and Marion Counties (caused by a separate storm) was evaluated...and was caused by a tornado rated EF2.
In the picture: A tornado rated EF2 tracked through portions of Marion and Baxter Counties on 02/05/2008.

 

The starting point of the tornado was 4 miles west-southwest of Rea Valley (Marion County). It dissipated 3 miles west-southwest of Mountain Home (Baxter County)...a path length of 14 miles.

 

Links of Interest (Surveys)
 Damage Survey Information (mainly Pope, Yell and Van Buren Counties) 
Damage Survey Information (mainly Stone, Izard, Sharp, Baxter and Marion Counties) 
Rating Upgraded to EF4
Aerial Survey
What is the Enhanced Fujita (EF) Scale?

 

 

Other Tornadoes
 
There were three other small tornadoes confirmed on the 5th in the Little Rock County Warning Area...both rated EF0.

 

Link of Interest
Damage Survey Information (smaller tornadoes)

 

Outside of the Little Rock County Warning Area, there were four tornadoes in eastern Arkansas (Memphis County Warning Area), two in the southeast (Jackson County Warning Area) and one in the south (Shreveport County Warning Area). These tornadoes were rated EF0 or EF1.

 

Coordinate Files of Tornadoes
 
The National Weather Service in Little Rock received several requests for data that shows exactly where tornadoes tracked on the 5th. Several teams from the office obtained this data on the road (ground surveys), in the air (aerial survey), and through interviews with people affected by the storm.

A KMZ (compressed KML) file was constructed using points visited by the teams. The points were plotted using mapping software. Many of the points have a damage rating (EF0 to EF4) and descriptions of damage...and there are some pictures available. Shapefiles are available as well.

A lot of work went into creating these files. Here are some of the people that made it happen...

Dan Koch (Information Technology Officer) - put the files together.

Steve Bays (Former Service Hydrologist), Dan Koch (Information Technology Officer) and Lance Pyle (Journeyman Forecaster) - conducted ground surveys on the long track tornado from Clinton (Van Buren County) to the ending point a few miles northeast of Highland (Sharp County).

Renee Fair (Meteorologist in Charge)**, John Robinson (Warning Coordination Meteorologist)** and Joe Goudsward (Senior Forecaster) - conducted ground surveys on the long track tornado from the starting point a few miles east-southeast of Centerville (Yell County) to Clinton (Van Buren County).

** Also surveyed damage caused by smaller tornadoes in Monroe and Yell Counties and also in Faulkner and White Counties.

John Lewis (Senior Forecaster), Chuck Rickard (Senior Forecaster), Amie Browne (Former Meteorological Intern) and Tabitha Clarke (Former Meteorological Intern/Current Service Hydrologist) - conducted ground survey on the long track tornado in eastern Stone and western Izard Counties to obtain additional data points.

John Lewis (Senior Forecaster) and Brian Smith (Former journeyman Forecaster/Current Senior Forecaster)  - conducted aerial survey of the long track tornado and the Baxter and Marion County tornado.

Ed Calianese (Warning Coordination Meteorologist) at the National Weather Service in Tulsa, Oklahoma - conducted ground survey in Marion and Baxter Counties...including the Gassville (Baxter County) area.

Alan Gerard (Meteorologist in Charge) at the National Weather Service in Jackson, Mississippi  - the member of the Quick Response Team (QRT) that determined the EF4 rating on the long track tornado (as shown in the data).

 
Track information for tornadoes outside of the Little Rock County Warning Area was provided by National Weather Service offices in Memphis, TN...Jackson, MS...and Shreveport, LA.

 

Link of Interest
Coordinate Files of Tornado Tracks: KMZ | ZIP
Note: These files are for use with GIS software. The "KMZ" (compressed "KML") file is intended for applications such as Google Earth. The "ZIP" file contains several shapefiles for applications such as ArcView.

 

Storm Reports
There was widespread severe weather (including tornadoes) on February 5, 2008. For a look at some reports, click here.
Preliminary reports of severe weather in the Little Rock County Warning Area on February 5, 2008 (in red).
Submit a storm report.
In the picture: Preliminary reports of severe weather in the Little Rock County Warning Area on February 5, 2008 (in red).

USA.gov is the U.S. government's official web portal to all federal, state and local government web resources and services.