Update, Friday morning, Feb. 22
The latest forecast is showing showers and some thunderstorms through tonight, although a chance for strong storms into Saturday morning is present. Hail, that they're calling "sub-severe (less than 1 inch diameter)" is also in the Friday night forecast.
Saturday during the day is where the chance for severe weather picks up with thunderstorms in advance of the cold front moving through. High winds are considered the primary threat from this front. Thunderstorm cells right at the frontal boundary, however, are where the potential for tornadoes exist. (We note a slight increase in the risk for tornadoes compared to yesterday's forecast, although they remain "low.")
Plus all this rain does raise the risk of flooding, although more to the east and south of the county.
The worst of what's in the forecast, however, remains south and east of the county, with Van Buren County in the "marginal" threat area. (Conway, just to our south, is in the elevated "slight" risk category, so worse is close.)
We will continue to update as well and frequently as possible.
The National Weather Service, Little Rock, is forecasting weather extremes as a cold front moves through the state with peak activity Saturday night.
Rainfall will begin Thursday night through Saturday, with high winds and tornado potential Saturday evening. Van Buren County is in the "Enhanced" risk area for Saturday's weather.
Rain will begin Thursday evening, with the heaviest rain to the southeast corner of the state and on to the east. Van Buren County is forecast for 1 to 1.5 inches of rain, with heavier rain just to the county's east and south. Some concern exists here due to already high water levels after rain earlier in the week of about 3 inches in the area.
The real concern is for Saturday evening where high winds are likely, with some attendant risk of tornadoes. A limited risk for hail is also in the forecast. Damaging winds are the biggest concern expressed in the forecast.