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Severe Weather/Heavy Rain on April 30 - May 1, 2010 (Pg1)
 
Winds turned with height on 04/30/2010. For tornadoes, there has to be a balance between instability (i.e. warmth/moisture) and shear (i.e. winds strengthening and turning with height). There was balance on April 30th, and several strong long track tornadoes were spawned.
In the picture: Winds turned with height on 04/30/2010. Winds near the ground (in green) were south to southeast at 15 to 20 knots, with 40 to 60 knot southwest winds at 850 mb (or around 5000 feet in red) and 700 mb (or around 10,000 feet in blue).

 

During the afternoon and evening, ten tornadoes were counted in the Little Rock County Warning Area across northern and central Arkansas. The strongest of these affected the Scotland (Van Buren County) area.

 

Tornado Totals
Coordinate File of Tornado Tracks (KMZ)
Note: This file is intended for applications such as Google Earth.
On April 30th and May 1st, 18 tornadoes were counted across the state. In the Little Rock County Warning Area, there were 13 tornadoes (10 on April 30th and 3 on May 1st).

 

The WSR-88D (Doppler Weather Radar) showed strong rotation around Scotland (Van Buren County) at 716 pm CDT on 04/30/2010.
In the picture: The WSR-88D (Doppler Weather Radar) showed strong rotation around Scotland (Van Buren County) at 716 pm CDT on 04/30/2010. Green/blue colors (winds toward the radar) were adjacent to yellow/red colors (winds away from the radar).
At the same time, a debris signature (bright white/pink colors) was picked up in the hook echo portion of the storm, indicating that something was hit (such as structures) in town.
In the picture: At the same time, a debris signature (bright white/pink colors) was picked up in the hook echo portion of the storm, indicating that something was hit (such as structures) in town.
 
This tornado (rated EF3) arrived from the southwest around 715 pm CDT, and caused extensive structural damage. Homes were heavily damaged or destroyed, and the town community center was ripped apart.

 

 

There were two shelters available in town, and they were full (i.e. people got word of the Tornado Warning posted for the area). Even so, there was one fatality and fifteen injuries. Four tornadoes affected portions of Conway, Marion, Stone and Van Buren Counties on 04/30/2010.
In the picture: Four tornadoes affected portions of Conway, Marion, Stone and Van Buren Counties on 04/30/2010.

 

The WSR-88D (Doppler Weather Radar) showed strong rotation tracking just south of Little Rock (Pulaski County) between 800 pm CDT and 900 pm CDT on 04/30/2010.
Later in the evening (between 800 pm CDT and 900 pm CDT), a storm produced a couple of tornadoes (EF2) just south and east of the Little Rock (Pulaski County) area.
In the picture: The WSR-88D (Doppler Weather Radar) showed strong rotation tracking just south of Little Rock (Pulaski County) between 800 pm CDT and 900 pm CDT on 04/30/2010.

 

Significant damage was noted in the East End (Saline County) community. The local fire station was dismantled, and several people were trapped in their homes (mostly due to fallen trees). 

 

 

One of the tornadoes tracked 35 miles, and hit South Bend (Lonoke County) and just southeast of Beebe (White County). A tornado was spotted to the southwest of East End (Saline County) during the evening of 04/30/2010.
In the picture: A tornado was spotted to the southwest of East End (Saline County) during the evening of 04/30/2010. The photo is courtesy of Leslie Hess. Click to enlarge.

 

One storm spawned five tornadoes in portions of Grant, Jackson, Lonoke, Pulaski, Saline and White Counties on 04/30/2010. The strongest tornado (rated EF3) produced by this storm headed through areas between Auvergne and Weldon (both in Jackson County) and destroyed a church.
In the picture: One storm spawned five tornadoes in portions of Grant, Jackson, Lonoke, Pulaski, Saline and White Counties on 04/30/2010. A later storm produced a weak tornado in Dallas County. 

 

Other tornado damage (EF1) was found around Carthage (Dallas County). In addition to tornadoes, abundant moisture in the atmosphere led to heavy to excessive rain. Near Union Hill (Scott County), heavy downpours filled a low water crossing. A man tried to drive through the water, and then attempted to escape his vehicle and drowned.

During the overnight hours, showers and thunderstorms became more widespread and a heavy rain event unfolded. Two to more than five inches of rain fell from central into northeast Arkansas.

Twenty four hour rainfall totals through 700 am CDT on May 1st included 5.00 inches at West Memphis (Crittenden County) and 3.68 inches at Little Rock (Pulaski County).

 

More Information
 
There is more concerning severe weather and heavy rain on April 30th and May 1st. To check out the rest of the story, click here.

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