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Interested in what kind of weather occurred in a recent year? Check out the most memorable events below.
 
Severe Storms on January 22, 2012 (Pg1)
 
Temperatures at 600 am CST on 01/22/2012. It did not look at all like a severe weather day early on January 22nd. Temperatures at 600 am CST were mostly in the 30s to lower 40s, and there were areas of fog and drizzle. Even so, forecasts called for dramatic changes and severe storms by evening. This is exactly what happened.
In the picture: Temperatures at 600 am CST on 01/22/2012.

 

A warm front was along the Gulf Coast, with dewpoints in the 50s/60s to the south of Arkansas at 600 am CST on 01/22/2012.
In the picture: A warm front was along the Gulf Coast, with dewpoints in the 50s/60s to the south of Arkansas at 600 am CST on 01/22/2012.
The front moved to the north and dewpoints surged into the 50s/60s in Arkansas by 600 pm CST on 01/22/2012.
In the picture: The front moved to the north and dewpoints surged into the 50s/60s in Arkansas by 600 pm CST on 01/22/2012. This was in response to an approaching storm system and cold front in the Plains.
 

A strong storm system in the Plains dragged a cold front toward the region. Ahead of the front, moisture (dewpoints in the 50s/60s) surged northward from the Gulf Coast. Temperatures soared into the lower and mid 70s in southern sections of the state. The atmosphere rapidly destabilized.

 

Scattered to numerous thunderstorms started erupting across the southeast half of Arkansas shortly before 600 pm CST. Powerful winds aloft caused storms to move quickly to the northeast at 50 to 60 mph. The satellite showed thunderstorms rapidly developing in the southeast half of Arkansas during the evening of 01/22/2012.
In the picture: The satellite showed thunderstorms rapidly developing in the southeast half of Arkansas during the evening of 01/22/2012.

 

WSR-88D (Doppler Weather Radar) Storm Relative Velocity Map (SRM) images indicated strong rotation (#1) heading from Bearden (Ouachita County) to Fordyce (Dallas County) and Rison (Cleveland County) between 704 pm and 740 pm CST on 01/22/2012.
Winds also turned with height, and strong rotation resulted in some storms. Seven tornadoes were counted.
In the picture: WSR-88D (Doppler Weather Radar) Storm Relative Velocity Map (SRM) images indicated strong rotation (#1) heading from Bearden (Ouachita County) to Fordyce (Dallas County) and Rison (Cleveland County) between 704 pm and 740 pm CST on 01/22/2012. Another storm with weaker rotation (#2) was close behind, and eventually led to a tornado around DeWitt (Arkansas County).

 

An Unusual Event?
While this event occurred in the middle of winter, it was not unusual. Some of the more prolific severe weather events have unfolded as early as January in Arkansas, especially when La Niña conditions (i.e. cooler than normal water in the equatorial Pacific) exist. Fifty six (56) tornadoes were spawned on January 21-22, 1999 as a La Niña pattern continued. The same pattern was in place when a long track (122 miles) tornado ripped through seven counties in the north on February 5, 2008. By the way, 1999 and 2008 were the most active tornado years on record in the state.

 

One storm in particular had a history of producing tornadoes (five of them) over a six county area. The first tornado (rated EF2) was confirmed from 3.0 miles west-southwest of Thornton (Calhoun County) to 4.9 miles southwest of Rison (Cleveland County). The path was just over 19 miles. Rotation was persistent in a storm that had a history of producing tornadoes for more than 100 miles during the evening of 01/22/2012.
In the picture: Rotation was persistent in a storm that had a history of producing tornadoes for more than 100 miles during the evening of 01/22/2012.

 

Houses and a country club were damaged on the north side of Fordyce (Dallas County). The tornado also slammed into a 150 year old church north of Kingsland (Cleveland County). Otherwise, the tornado mainly downed or snapped dozens of trees.

Farther northeast, the storm briefly dropped a second tornado (rated EF1/3.8 mile path) around Moscow (Jefferson County) and a third longer track tornado (rated EF2/16.9 mile path) from Sweden (Jefferson County) to a few miles northeast of Lodge Corner (Arkansas County). At Sweden (Jefferson County), metal buildings and grain bins were damaged or destroyed. A fourth tornado (rated EF2/14.4 mile path) affected areas from 5.5 miles west-northwest of DeWitt to Crocketts Bluff (both in Arkansas County). Several transmission towers were mangled along the way. Before the storm exited into the Memphis County Warning Area, there was a fifth tornado (rated EF1/5.8 mile path) south of Ragtown (Monroe County).

 

 

More Information
 
There is more concerning severe weather on January 22nd. To check out the rest of the story, click here.

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