The severe storm season of 2019 brought with it 33 tornadoes, more than three dozen reports of thunderstorm wind gusts of 75 mph or greater, an instance of hail slightly larger than grapefruits, and hundreds of reports of flash flooding. Combined, hazardous weather resulted in five fatalities in 2019. With the 2020 spring severe weather season fast approaching, the National Weather Service, in cooperation with the Arkansas Division of Emergency Management, has designated the week of March 1-7 as Severe Weather Awareness Week. This safety campaign is designed to help Arkansans prepare for the spring storm season and information will be released at or throughout the week.

Safety tips and statistics from 2019 will be included as well as information on the following: 

Sunday: Introduction to Severe Weather Awareness Week in Arkansas. 

Monday: Flooding - The difference between floods and flash floods, along with some examples. 

Tuesday: Lightning - Where and when lightning tends to strike, and how often. 

Wednesday: Tornadoes - The frequency of weak versus monster tornadoes, how many tornadoes are spawned each year, and a word about tornado sirens. 

Thursday: Severe Thunderstorms - In addition to tornadoes, the size of hail and the strength of thunderstorm gusts to be considered severe. 

Friday: Watches & Warnings - Understanding the meaning of watches and warnings, how long they are in effect, and where they originate. 

Saturday: Social Media Communication - How platforms such as Facebook and Twitter are used to spread the word about upcoming high impact events, and to collect severe weather reports from the public.

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