Climate Data
Yearly Reports
Interested in what kind of weather occurred in a recent year? Check out the most memorable events below.
 
Severe Weather/Heavy Rain on May 2, 2008 (Pg2)
 
The WSR-88D (Doppler Weather Radar) estimated two to four inches of rain in northern Conway, southern Van Buren and Cleburne Counties during the morning of 05/02/2008. In addition to tornadic storms, flooding rain occurred in some areas. Ironically, the heaviest rain fell in portions of northern Conway, southern Van Buren and Cleburne Counties...or where some of the worst tornado damage occurred.
In the picture: The WSR-88D (Doppler Weather Radar) estimated two to four inches of rain in northern Conway, southern Van Buren and Cleburne Counties during the morning of 05/02/2008.

 

Around Damascus (Van Buren County), people with rain gauges who were interviewed during tornado damage surveys reported up to 7 inches of precipitation! Elsewhere, Greers Ferry Dam (Cleburne County) had 2.91 inches of rain...with 2.71 inches at Elgin Ferry (Jackson County) and 2.05 inches at Center Ridge (Conway County).  

 

A storm system tracked into Iowa during the afternoon and evening of the 2nd, and dragged a cold front slowly through eastern Arkansas. Severe weather and heavy rain finally exited the state toward midnight.  The pattern at 1 pm CDT on 05/02/2008, with a storm system ("L") moving into Iowa and dragging a cold front into Arkansas.
In the picture: The pattern at 1 pm CDT on 05/02/2008, with a storm system ("L") moving into Iowa and dragging a cold front into Arkansas. Ahead of the front, very moist air was in place...with well above normal precipitable water (water vapor contained in a vertical column of at atmosphere) values over 1.5 inches. CAPE (Convective Available Potential Energy...or a measure of instability) was rather high (over 2000 J/kg), with thunderstorms developing readily. There was also the potential for rotating winds given some helicity (over 200 m2/s2).

 

 

Reports from the Storm Prediction Center (SPC).
In the pictures: Reports from the Storm Prediction Center (SPC). Reports for 05/01/2008 are actually for the twenty four hour period ending at 7 am CDT on the 2nd. Reports for 05/02/2008 are from 7 am CDT on the 2nd through 3 am CDT on the 3rd.
 
Before the front departed, it stalled in the extreme southeast...with a prolonged period of rain. Arkansas City (Desha County) had 6.00 inches of precipitation, with 3.13 inches at Dermott (Chicot County) and 2.35 inches at Helena (Phillips County).

 

Damage Surveys
A wedge shaped tornado entered Van Buren County from Conway County as witnessed along Highway 285 between Damascus and Rabbit Ridge (both in Van Buren County) on 05/02/2008. Ten tornadoes were identified in the Little Rock County Warning Area. There were fourteen tornadoes statewide.
In the picture: A wedge shaped tornado entered Van Buren County from Conway County as witnessed along Highway 285 between Damascus and Rabbit Ridge (both in Van Buren County) on 05/02/2008. The picture is courtesy of Jessie Brown.

 

One long track tornado (rated EF3) was noted from near Birdtown (Conway County) to around 5 miles north-northeast of Damascus (Van Buren County) to roughly 5 miles north-northwest of Drasco (Cleburne County). A tornado (rated EF3) tracked through portions of Conway, Van Buren and Cleburne Counties on 05/02/2008.
In the picture: A tornado (rated EF3) tracked through portions of Conway, Van Buren and Cleburne Counties on 05/02/2008. A smaller satellite tornado (rated EF1) was spawned just northwest of Damascus (Van Buren County).

 

There was another weak tornado (rated EF1) just to the northwest of Damascus (Van Buren County).

 

Links of Interest
Damage Survey
Damage Photos

 

Three tornadoes (rated EF1 and EF2) tracked through Dallas, Grant, Saline, Pulaski, and Lonoke Counties on 05/02/2008. Other tornadoes (rated EF2) tracked from northwest of Carthage (Grant County) through Cross Roads (Grant County), and from around Belfast (Grant County) through Hensley (Pulaski County) to a few miles south of Lonoke (Lonoke County). There was also a tornado (rated EF1) at Carlisle (Lonoke County).
In the picture: Three tornadoes (rated EF1 and EF2) tracked through Dallas, Grant, Saline, Pulaski, and Lonoke Counties on 05/02/2008.

 

Links of Interest
Damage Survey
Damage Photos

 

Other Tornadoes
 
There were five other small tornadoes confirmed on the 7th in the Little Rock County Warning Area...all rated EF0 or EF1.

 

Link of Interest
Damage Survey Information (smaller tornadoes)

 

Across the remainder of Arkansas, there were two tornadoes in eastern sections of the state (Memphis County Warning Area), one in the southeast (Jackson County Warning Area) and one in the southwest (Shreveport County Warning Area).

 

Coordinate Files of Tornadoes
 
Where exactly did the tornadoes track? Several teams from the National Weather Service obtained data on the road (ground surveys) and through interviews with people in affected areas.

A KMZ (compressed KML) file has been constructed using points visited by the teams. The points were plotted using mapping software. Shapefiles (ZIP file) are available as well.

 

Links 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
Severe weather, including tornadoes, was noted in Arkansas on May 2nd. For a look at some reports, click here.
Preliminary reports of severe weather and flash flooding in the Little Rock County Warning Area on May 2, 2008 (in red).
Submit a storm report.
In the picture: Preliminary reports of severe weather and flash flooding in the Little Rock County Warning Area on May 2, 2008 (in red).

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