Possible severe weather on Good Friday

For the second time this week, parts of Southeast Arkansas may experience severe weather.

A classic supercell containing a large hail core dumped baseball size hail on Gillette (Arkansas County) and Yancopin (Desha County) before spawning a tornado or tornadoes Tuesday southwest of Gillette and near Watson (Desha County), according to the National Weather Service in Little Rock.

Some property damage occurred near Pendleton, but no injuries were reported.

Scott Coburn Pic
March 31 supercell, roughly 3 to 4 miles east of Dumas. The storm came from the Bryant area down through Gillette when it turned further south going through Pendleton, Backgate, and then Watson before heading towards Mississippi. Photo by Scott Coburn

 

March 31 Storm Reports
March 31 Storm Reports

The Storm Prediction Center in Norman, Oklahoma has included most of Southeast Arkansas in an enhanced area for severe storms Good Friday. The enhanced designation is a new classification implemented by the SPC in October 2014 to better describe the risk of severe weather. Enhanced is at the upper end of slight risk, but not as severe as the previously described moderate risk.

“This change is part of the National Weather Service’s efforts to build a Weather-Ready Nation,” said SPC Director Russell Schneider. “It reflects our increased ability to forecast hazardous severe weather and advances our ability to communicate hazardous weather risk to the public.”

The main severe threat from possible storms Friday is damaging wind and large hail, although an isolated tornado cannot be ruled out. Severe thunderstorms are classified as storms capable of producing 1-inch hail or larger and wind speeds exceeding 58 mph.

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