Drought Information Statement
Issued by NWS Little Rock, AR

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AXUS74 KLZK 090409
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ARC001-005-009-011-013-019-023-025-029-039-041-043-045-049-051-053-
059-063-065-067-069-071-079-083-085-089-095-097-101-103-105-109-113-
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DROUGHT INFORMATION STATEMENT
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE LITTLE ROCK AR
1000 PM CST THU DEC 8 2016

...DROUGHT SITUATION IMPROVING SOMEWHAT IN ARKANSAS...

SYNOPSIS...

AFTER A LOT OF RAIN AND FLOODING IN AUGUST...PRECIPITATION SHUT
OFF IN SEPTEMBER...OCTOBER...AND MUCH OF NOVEMBER. IT WAS THE
11TH DRIEST FALL ON RECORD IN ARKANSAS...WITH A STATEWIDE AVERAGE
OF ONLY 6.70 INCHES OF PRECIPITATION. THIS RESULTED IN A WORSENING
DROUGHT THAT WAS BECOMING SERIOUS IN MUCH OF THE REGION.
FORTUNATELY...THERE WAS SOME RELIEF IN THE LATTER HALF OF NOVEMBER
AND THE FIRST WEEK OF DECEMBER...AND THE DROUGHT STATUS SHOWED
SOME IMPROVEMENT.

THE U.S. DROUGHT MONITOR IS AVAILABLE ONLINE AT
HTTP://DROUGHTMONITOR.UNL.EDU. IT IS A COLLABORATIVE EFFORT BETWEEN
SEVERAL GOVERNMENT AND ACADEMIC PARTNERS. THE U.S. DROUGHT MONITOR
IS ISSUED EACH THURSDAY MORNING AND TAKES INTO ACCOUNT HYDRO-
METEOROLOGICAL DATA THROUGH 7 AM TUESDAY. THERE ARE FOUR LEVELS OF
DROUGHT: D1 /MODERATE/...D2 /SEVERE/...D3 /EXTREME/...AND D4
/EXCEPTIONAL/.

THE LATEST U.S. DROUGHT MONITOR...VALID DECEMBER 6TH 2016...
INDICATED WIDESPREAD D1 /87 PERCENT COVERAGE/ CONDITIONS.
THESE CONDITIONS AFFECTED ALL BUT EXTREME NORTHERN SECTIONS OF
THE STATE. THERE WERE D2 /4 PERCENT COVERAGE/ CONDITIONS IN
SMALL PORTIONS OF SOUTHERN AND WESTERN ARKANSAS. TWO WEEKS
PRIOR...D2 CONDITIONS WERE MUCH MORE WIDESPREAD /64 PERCENT
COVERAGE/...AND THERE WERE D3 /2 PERCENT COVERAGE/ CONDITIONS IN
FOUR COUNTIES IN THE SOUTH /OUTSIDE OF THE LITTLE ROCK COUNTY
WARNING AREA/.

CLIMATE DATA AND ANALYSIS...

A RIDGE OF HIGH PRESSURE WAS PERSISTENT OVER THE SOUTH CENTRAL
AND SOUTHEAST UNITED STATES DURING MUCH OF THE FALL. UNDER THE
HIGH...IT WAS WARMER THAN USUAL AND THERE WAS NOT MUCH RAIN.

IT WAS THE SECOND WARMEST FALL ON RECORD SINCE 1895. AVERAGE
TEMPERATURES WERE FOUR TO FIVE DEGREES ABOVE NORMAL. FREEZES ARE
TYPICALLY FELT IN PARTS OF NORTHERN ARKANSAS BY LATE OCTOBER...
BUT NOT THIS YEAR. VEGETATION WAS SLOW TO GO DORMANT...SO GROUND
WATER CONSUMPTION WAS ELEVATED.

AS PLANTS UTILIZED MOISTURE IN THE SOIL...STORM CLOUDS DID LITTLE
TO REPLENISH THE MOISTURE. FROM SEPTEMBER 1ST THROUGH NOVEMBER
30TH /91 DAYS/...FIVE TO TEN INCH RAINFALL DEFICITS WERE COMMON
ACROSS THE REGION. DURING THIS PERIOD...LESS THAN FIVE INCHES
OF LIQUID WAS MEASURED AT FORT SMITH /SEBASTIAN COUNTY/...
TEXARKANA /MILLER COUNTY/...AND WEST MEMPHIS /CRITTENDEN COUNTY/.
RAINFALL WAS THIRTY TO FORTY PERCENT OF AVERAGE AT THESE
LOCATIONS.

PRECIPITATION FROM SEPTEMBER 1ST THROUGH NOVEMBER 30TH 2016...

SITE                  AMOUNT     DEPARTURE   PCT OF NORMAL

FAYETTEVILLE /NW AR/   6.44        -6.94          48
HARRISON /NC AR/       5.81        -6.17          48
JONESBORO /NE AR/      7.08        -5.14          58
FORT SMITH /WC AR/     3.78        -9.03          30
LITTLE ROCK /C AR/     5.78        -7.59          43
WEST MEMPHIS /EC AR/   4.83        -7.17          40
TEXARKANA /SW AR/      4.15        -9.03          31
EL DORADO /SC AR/      6.55        -6.64          50
PINE BLUFF /SE AR/     5.85        -6.67          47

IT WAS THE ELEVENTH DRIEST FALL ON RECORD IN ARKANSAS...
AND THE DRIEST SINCE 1989. THE STATEWIDE AVERAGE PRECIPITATION
DURING THIS THREE MONTH PERIOD WAS 6.70 INCHES...WHICH WAS
4.64 INCHES SUBPAR.

DURING THE LAST WEEK OF NOVEMBER AND FIRST WEEK OF DECEMBER...
HIGH PRESSURE RELENTED OVER THE SOUTHERN STATES...AND THE
PATTERN BECAME UNSETTLED. TWO TO FOUR INCHES OF RAIN DUMPED
IN THE SOUTHEAST HALF OF THE STATE. THIS IMPROVED THE DROUGHT
SITUATION LOCALLY.

SOIL MOISTURE/HYDROLOGIC SUMMARY/FIRE DANGER...

THERE WAS A MODERATE FIRE DANGER IN ONLY 8 OF 75 COUNTIES
AS OF DECEMBER 8TH. THESE COUNTIES WERE IN NORTHWEST ARKANSAS.
THERE WERE NO BURN BANS POSTED.

SOIL MOISTURE HAD INCREASED OVERALL. VALUES WERE NEAR NORMAL
/30TH TO 70TH PERCENTILE/ IN MUCH OF THE STATE...WITH BELOW
AVERAGE /10TH TO 30TH PERCENTILE/ VALUES IN THE NORTHWEST.

GIVEN RECENT RAIN...STREAMFLOW ALONG AREA TRIBUTARIES WAS ELEVATED.
MOST SITES REPORTED AVERAGE STREAMFLOW /FROM THE 25TH TO 75TH
PERCENTILE/. HOWEVER...THERE WERE LOCATIONS IN THE NORTHWEST WITH
SUBPAR LEVELS /10TH TO 24TH PERCENTILE/. SOME LEVELS WERE WELL BELOW
AVERAGE /LESS THAN THE 10TH PERCENTILE/.

FORECAST...

WHILE STORM SYSTEMS AND FRONTS WILL AFFECT THE REGION IN THE
FORESEEABLE FUTURE...MOISTURE LOOKS LIMITED AND LESS THAN
USUAL PRECIPITATION SHOULD RESULT IN THE NEXT COUPLE OF WEEKS.

LOOKING AHEAD...WE ARE TRANSITIONING FROM EL NINO /WARMER THAN NORMAL
WATER ALONG THE EQUATOR IN THE PACIFIC OCEAN/ TO A POSSIBLE LA NINA
/COOLER THAN NORMAL WATER/. THIS MAY INFLUENCE WHAT IS TO COME THIS
WINTER. IN THE PAST FIVE TRANSITIONS FROM EL NINO TO NEUTRAL OR
LA NINA CONDITIONS...PRECIPITATION IN ARKANSAS WAS CLOSE TO AVERAGE
THREE TIMES AND WELL BELOW AVERAGE TWICE DURING THE WINTER /DECEMBER
THROUGH FEBRUARY/.

YEARS               DECEMBER THROUGH FEBRUARY          DEPARTURE

1959/1960                    12.73                       +0.61
1966/1967                     7.83                       -4.29
1983/1984                    12.66                       +0.54
1992/1993                    12.57                       +0.45
2005/2006                     7.86                       -4.26

THE LATEST OUTLOOK FROM THE CLIMATE PREDICTION CENTER CALLS FOR
A DRIER THAN AVERAGE WINTER ACROSS THE SOUTHERN STATES...INCLUDING
ARKANSAS. THIS IMPLIES THAT OUR DROUGHT WILL LIKELY STICK AROUND AND
COULD WORSEN.

&&

RELATED WEBSITES...

NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE LITTLE ROCK HOMEPAGE:
HTTP://WWW.WEATHER.GOV/LZK

DROUGHT INFORMATION SPECIFIC TO WFO LITTLE ROCK CWA
HTTP://WWW.WEATHER.GOV/LZK/DROUGHT.HTM

NATIONAL INTEGRATED DROUGHT INFORMATION SYSTEM:
HTTP://WWW.DROUGHT.GOV

U.S. DROUGHT MONITOR:
HTTP://DROUGHTMONITOR.UNL.EDU

DROUGHT IMPACT REPORTER:
HTTP://DROUGHTREPORTER.UNL.EDU

CLIMATE PREDICTION CENTER:
HTTP://WWW.CPC.NCEP.NOAA.GOV

SOUTHERN REGION CLIMATE CENTER:
HTTP://WWW.SRCC.LSU.EDU/

UNITED STATES GEOLOGICAL SURVEY:
HTTP://WWW.USGS.GOV/WATER

QUESTIONS OR COMMENTS...

IF YOU HAVE ANY QUESTIONS OR COMMENTS ABOUT THIS DROUGHT INFORMATION
STATEMENT PLEASE CONTACT:

NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE FORECAST OFFICE
8400 REMOUNT ROAD
NORTH LITTLE ROCK AR 72118

PHONE: 501-834-0308
EMAIL: SR-LZK.WEBMASTER@NOAA.GOV

$$

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