Monthly Storm Reports and Storm Data
Storm Reports
Are you interested in what happened during a recent event? Check out the report below.
 
December, 2013 Storm Report
 
Short Weather Summary
 
December was a tale of two seasons in Arkansas. There was a big winter event featuring snow and ice on the 5th/6th, and a significant heavy rain and severe weather event on the 20th/21st.

 

Record Temperatures
 
There was one record low temperature on December 7th, and several record highs on the 4th and 20th. Check out the record below.

 

Site Record Low (Date of Occurrence)
Stuttgart 21 (12/07)

 

Site Record High (Date of Occurrence)
Hot Springs 75T (12/04)
 Little Rock  77 (12/04)
Monticello   79 (12/04)
North Little Rock  70 (12/20)
 Stuttgart 79 (12/04), 70 (12/20)
Note: "T" means record was tied.

 

Significant Winter and Heavy Rain/Severe Weather Episodes
 
It sure did not feel like winter on December 4th. The high temperature was 79 degrees at Monticello (Drew County), with 78 degrees at El Dorado (Union County), Pine Bluff (Jefferson County) and Texarkana (Miller County), and 77 degrees at Little Rock (Pulaski County). Then a front went through, and the mercury plummeted.
In the pictures: A cold front slowly worked toward the Gulf Coast, with sharply colder air and wintry precipitation spreading into Arkansas from the north in the twenty four hour period ending at 1200 pm CST on 12/06/2013.

 

Areas of rain changed to freezing rain, sleet and snow on the 5th and 6th. Significant ice was confined to the Ouachita Mountains and parts of the Arkansas River valley in western sections of the state. Accruals over half an inch were reported. This includes Fort Smith (Sebastian County), Mena (Polk County), Mount Ida (Montgomery County) and Russellville (Pope County).

The ice did cause a fatality. North of Dover (Pope County), a tree weighed down by ice fell into a camping trailer and killed a man.

 

Overall snow and ice totals through 600 pm CST on 12/06/2013.
In the picture: Overall snow and ice totals through 600 pm CST on 12/06/2013.
 

Snow and sleet accumulations were impressive across the northern/western counties. Calico Rock (Izard County) was buried under a foot of pellets and powder, with 11 inches at Marshall (Searcy County), 10 inches at Oakland (Marion County) and Salem (Fulton County), and 9 inches at Harrison (Boone County) and Jasper (Newton County). At least an inch of sleet was measured as far south as the Little Rock (Pulaski County) area.

As snow/sleet piled up in Harrison (Boone County), the temperature only managed to reach 20 degrees. This was the coldest high temperature locally so early in the season.

In the days to follow, the weight of the snow/ce caused structures to collapse. At Ash Flat (Sharp County), a convenience store canopy collapsed and injured a man. Boat docks buckled on Lake Norfork near Henderson (Baxter County). In Marion County alone, structural damage estimates were close to $10 million. At least a dozen turkey houses in the county were flattened, killing tens of thousands of turkeys.

 

It warmed up nicely toward the middle of the month, with above normal temperatures by the 16th. It was too warm for wintry precipitation by the time the next system arrived on the 20th/21st, but there was a lot of rain.
Winter, flood, and severe headlines (watches, warnings and advisories) were posted across the middle of the country as of 1001 am CST on 12/21/2013.
In the picture: Winter, flood, and severe headlines (watches, warnings and advisories) were posted across the middle of the country as of 1001 am CST on 12/21/2013.

 

Forty eight hour rainfall through 1200 am CST on 12/22/2013.
In the picture: Forty eight hour rainfall through 1200 am CST on 12/22/2013.
 

The heaviest rain fell in the southeast half of Arkansas. Three to more than five inch amounts were common. Forty eight hour rainfall through 1200 am CST on the 22nd included 5.61 inches at Newport (Jackson County), 5.16 inches at North Little Rock (Pulaski County), 5.01 inches at Pine Bluff (Jefferson County), 4.72 inches at Little Rock (Pulaski County), 4.27 inches at Blytheville (Mississippi County), 4.04 inches El Dorado (Union County) and 3.71 inches at West Memphis (Crittenden County).

Given this much rain, flash flooding was a concern. Roads flooded in the Little Rock (Pulaski County) area. Numerous county roads were under water in Lonoke, Jackson and White Counties. The intersection of Highways 224 and 226 were closed due to high water just south of Swifton (Jackson County). Three cars stalled along a flooded road near a hospital in Pine Bluff (Jefferson County). The westbound lane of Highway 36 caved in close to Georgetown (White County) and was barricaded.

Because of this event, precipitation totals finished above normal for the month in much of the state. There was more than an inch and a half of surplus liquid at Jonesboro (Craighead County), Little Rock (Pulaski County) and Pine Bluff (Jefferson County).  

 

Precipitation in December, 2013
Site Amount Normal +/- % of Normal
Fayetteville (NW AR) 4.10 3.24 +0.86 127%
Harrison (NC AR) 3.75 3.20 +0.55 117%
Jonesboro (NE AR) 6.44 4.77 +1.67 135%
Fort Smith (WC AR) 4.10 3.29 +0.81 125%
Little Rock (C AR) 6.94 4.97 +1.97 140%
West Memphis (EC AR) 6.26 5.42 +0.84 115%
Texarkana (SW AR) 5.83 5.05 +0.78 115%
El Dorado (SC AR) 6.56 5.18 +1.38 127%
Pine Bluff (SE AR) 7.73 5.44 +2.29 142%

 

The Little Rock County Warning Area was affected by at least two tornadoes during this event.

There was also some severe weather. Just after 630 pm CST on the 20th, a brief tornado (rated EF1) was spawned just south of Redfield (Jefferson County). Several homes suffered roof damage, and numerous trees were uprooted or snapped. Fortunately, no injuries were reported.

In the picture: The Little Rock County Warning Area was affected by at least two tornadoes during this event. One tornado (rated EF1) cut through the Redfield (Jefferson County) area during the evening of 12/20/2013, with a stronger tornado (rated EF2) tracking through southern Desha County on 12/21/2013.

 

On the 21st, there was a tornado (rated EF2) a couple of miles west of Hughes (St. Francis County) around 330 pm CST. Three mobile homes were destroyed. There was one fatality, and three people injured (one seriously). Four eighteen wheelers were overturned by a tornado (rated EF1) on U.S. Highway 65 near Dermott (Chicot County). This tornado eventually crossed the Mississippi River and intensified (to EF2) in Bolivar County, Mississippi. The path length was an impressive 41 miles.

 

Links of Interest
December 5-6, 2013 (turning colder/winter storm)
December 20-21, 2013 (heavy rain/severe storms)

 

Additional December Details
 
For more details about December, 2013...go to the "Temperatures and Precipitation" section below.

 

Temperatures and Precipitation
Temperatures finished a little below normal in December. Readings at North Little Rock (Pulaski County) are shown to right. December, 2013 Temperatures in North Little Rock

 

December, 2013 Precipitation in North Little Rock Precipitation was above normal across much of Arkansas. Amounts at North Little Rock (Pulaski County) are shown to left.

 

To right, a look at precipitation across the state. December, 2013 Precipitation in Arkansas

 

For a look at actual temperatures and precipitation in Arkansas as measured by the cooperative observer network, click here.

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