Weekend rains could relieve drought conditions

by The City Wire staff ([email protected]) 58 views 

AccuWeather.com reports beginning later this weekend and continuing into next week, there is the potential for heavy, gusty thunderstorms hitting portions of Texas, the southern Plains and the Southwest.

While it will be hot, most of Arkansas will avoid severe weather.

While the monsoon continues to evolve over the Southwest, a disturbance is forecast to roll westward over the Central states this weekend. If it continues on into the southern High Plains, Rockies and Great Basin, some very wild weather is possible in parts of the West.

The system is likely to bring not only some extra thunderstorms but also very drenching and severe storms to some communities.

The pattern has the potential to bring drought-busting rain in some cases. On the other hand, so much rain could fall so fast that tremendous flash flooding occurs.

Similar setups like this in the past, with and without tropical systems, have produced several inches of rain on a daily basis.

In very localized areas, some of the storms can also bring a significant amount of hail, damaging wind gusts and localized dust storms.

Most of Arkansas is categorized as being “abnormally dry,” but not in a drought condition. (See map below.)

Any thunderstorm could produce frequent lightning strikes which could ignite new wildfires.

Use extreme caution when traveling along arroyos in this weather pattern. A distant thunderstorm can bring a rush of water downstream hours later with little notice.

Avoid hiking on the ridges from the midday to the afternoon hours, when most thunderstorms rapidly develop, to avoid being struck by lightning.