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Arkansas experiences its first winter storm, and the National Weather Service expects more



Little Rock, Arkansas – Although Arkansas has weathered its first winter storm of the season, more are expected, according to the National Weather Service.

Numerous parts of the state were struck by this week’s winter storm, making it difficult for water utilities like those in Stone County and the City of Lonoke to prevent system failure.

Due to the hazardous traffic conditions, a lot of government agencies and schools remained closed until Thursday. The National Weather Service reports that despite the difficulties, Arkansas agencies have risen to the task and managed it effectively.

“The overall impact was pretty well mitigated by local area emergency managers, by Arkansas Department of Transportation,” said Dennis Cavanaugh, a warning coordination meteorologist at the National Weather Service’s Little Rock office.

It’s encouraging that this year’s El Nino weather trend increases the likelihood of another significant winter storm this season.

“If you combine that with the fact that we’re still only not quite halfway through winter yet, there’s a pretty good chance that we still have another major winter storm to go,” Cavanaugh said.

“A lot of times in January, we’ve had quick-hitting storm systems, but the winter storm systems that have lasted for a good week—like in 2021, when we had back-to-back storm systems that each produced about a foot of snow—those types of winter storms, highest magnitude, and longevity, have been in February,” he said.

It would be prudent, according to the National Weather Service, for individuals to be ready for the next winter storm.

“I hope Arkansans can do a similar job in preparing for whatever the next storm system might be this winter that could lock us down or keep us indoors for a few days,” Cavanaugh said. “Keep those winter weather safety tips in mind: have nonperishable goods at your disposal so that you can use them if you can’t travel for a few days. Make sure you stock up on the medicines and only travel when it’s safe to do so.”


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