ZCZC LITWRKPNS
TTAA00 KLIT 151058
ARZ003>007-012>016-021>025-030>034-037>047-052>057-062>069-022000-

PUBLIC INFORMATION STATEMENT
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE LITTLE ROCK AR
600 AM CST MON MAR 2 2015

...TODAYS TOPIC FOR SEVERE WEATHER AWARENESS WEEK IS 
THUNDERSTORMS...

ARKANSAS GOVERNOR ASA HUTCHINSON HAS PROCLAIMED THE WEEK OF
MARCH 1ST THROUGH 7TH AS SEVERE WEATHER AWARENESS WEEK
IN ARKANSAS.

A DIFFERENT TOPIC WILL BE DISCUSSED EACH DAY...AND TODAYS TOPIC
IS THUNDERSTORMS.

AT ANY GIVEN MOMENT AROUND THE WORLD...APPROXIMATELY 1800
THUNDERSTORMS ARE OCCURRING. ALTHOUGH THUNDERSTORMS ARE RELATIVELY
SMALL...WHEN CONSIDERED ON A GLOBAL SCALE OF WEATHER...ALL
THUNDERSTORMS ARE DANGEROUS. LIGHTNING...FLASH FLOODS...HAIL...
STRAIGHT-LINE WINDS...AND TORNADOES ALL RESULT FROM THUNDERSTORMS.

A THUNDERSTORM IS CONSIDERED SEVERE WHEN IT PRODUCES WINDS OF AT
LEAST 58 MPH...OR HAIL AT LEAST 1 INCH IN DIAMETER /THE SIZE OF A
QUARTER/. 

STRAIGHT-LINE WINDS PRODUCED BY THUNDERSTORMS CAUSED FOUR DEATHS
ACROSS THE STATE LAST YEAR. ALTOGETHER...THERE WERE 18 INSTANCES 
OF THUNDERSTORM GUSTS OF AT LEAST 80 MPH LOCALLY IN 2014.

THE STRONGEST THUNDERSTORM WINDS WERE REPORTED ON OCTOBER 13TH. 
ON THAT DAY...90 TO 95 MPH GUSTS OCCURRED NEAR ROCKY AND HATFIELD.

LARGE HAIL...ON AVERAGE...CAUSES OVER ONE BILLION DOLLARS IN 
DAMAGE /PROPERTY AND CROPS/ IN THE UNITED STATES EACH YEAR. SOME 
INJURIES DUE TO LARGE HAIL OCCUR IN THIS COUNTRY EACH YEAR...BUT 
DEATHS FROM HAIL ARE RELATIVELY RARE. ANIMALS FARE FAR WORSE THAN 
HUMANS. 

THE LARGEST HAILSTONES REPORTED IN ARKANSAS DURING 2014 OCCURED 
ON APRIL 3RD. ON THAT DAY...THREE INCH DIAMETER HAIL WAS REPORTED 
NEAR LANDIS IN SEARCY COUNTY...WITH TWO AND A HALF INCH DIAMETER 
HAIL AROUND BIG FLAT AND HENDERSON...WHICH ARE BOTH IN BAXTER 
COUNTY...AND WIDEMAN IN IZARD COUNTY.

LIGHTNING IS A HAZARD IN ALL THUNDERSTORMS...WHETHER THEY ARE 
SEVERE OR NOT. WHENEVER THUNDER IS HEARD...THERE IS LIGHTNING
NEARBY. LIGHTNING IS DEADLY...WITH 2 ARKANSANS KILLED AND
10 INJURED IN 2014.

FLASH FLOODS ARE ANOTHER THUNDERSTORM HAZARD. VEHICLES DRIVEN 
INTO FLOODED AREAS RESULT IN THE GREATEST NUMBER OF FLASH FLOOD 
DEATHS. FORTUNATELY...THERE WERE NO FLASH FLOOD FATALITIES IN
ARKANSAS LAST YEAR.

OCCASIONALLY...THUNDERSTORMS SPAWN TORNADOES. MOST OF THESE
ARE PRODUCED IN THE SPRING AND FALL DURING THE AFTERNOON AND
EVENING. THERE ARE 33 TORNADOES IN A TYPICAL YEAR. THERE WERE
20 TORNADOES LOCALLY IN 2014...AND THESE RESULTED IN 
17 FATALITIES.

ACROSS THE COUNTRY...THE TOP THREE DEADLIEST THUNDERSTORM
HAZARDS IN THE LAST 30 YEARS YEARS WERE FLASH FLOODS...
TORNADOES AND LIGHTNING /IN THAT ORDER/.  

...SOME THUNDERSTORM SAFETY RULES...

KNOW THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN A WATCH AND A WARNING. THE NATIONAL
WEATHER SERVICE ISSUES WATCHES WHEN CONDITIONS ARE FAVORABLE FOR
THE DEVELOPMENT OF SEVERE WEATHER. WARNINGS ARE RESERVED FOR
CASES WHERE SEVERE WEATHER IS IMMINENT OR OCCURRING.

MAKE SURE THAT YOU HAVE A SOURCE TO RECEIVE THE LATEST 
INFORMATION...SUCH AS NOAA WEATHER RADIO ALL HAZARDS... 
COMMERCIAL RADIO...TV STATIONS OR CABLE TV. OTHER SOURCES OF
WARNING INFORMATION CAN INCLUDE TELEPHONE NOTIFICATION SERVICES 
TO WHICH PEOPLE SUBSCRIBE...PAGERS AND CELL PHONES.

REMEMBER...IF YOU CAN HEAR THUNDER...YOU ARE IN DANGER FROM
LIGHTNING. GO INDOORS IMMEDIATELY. IF YOU ARE IN THE WATER...
GET OUT IMMEDIATELY. BOATERS SHOULD HEAD INLAND.

TELEPHONE LINES AND METAL PIPES CAN CONDUCT ELECTRICITY. 
DO NOT USE ELECTRICAL APPLIANCES DURING A THUNDERSTORM. 
DO NOT USE CORDED PHONES...EXCEPT IN EMERGENCIES.

STAY OUT OF THE BATHTUB OR SHOWER.

GET OFF THE GOLF COURSE. STAY AWAY FROM METAL FENCES AND 
POLES.

&&

NOTES FOR THE NEWS MEDIA...
THERE WILL NOT BE A FORMAL TORNADO DRILL THIS YEAR CONDUCTED
BY THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN LITTLE ROCK. EVEN SO...
PEOPLE ARE ENCOURAGED TO PRACTICE GOING TO A PLACE OF SAFETY
WHEN THE NOAA WEATHER RADIO ALARM IS SOUNDED DURING THE ROUTINE 
WEEKLY TEST. THIS TEST IS ON WEDNESDAY BETWEEN 11 AM AND NOON. 
IN THE EVENT OF THREATENING WEATHER ON WEDNESDAY...THE TEST 
IS POSTPONED UNTIL THE NEXT GOOD WEATHER DAY.

FOR A LIST OF ALL THE TORNADOES AND OTHER SIGNIFICANT WEATHER
EVENTS THAT OCCURRED IN 2014...
 
HTTP://WWW.SRH.NOAA.GOV/IMAGES/LZK/PDF/STORMSOF2014.PDF

$$

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