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'Exceptional' drought area in Arkansas triples

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KTHV) -- Red, orange and brown, they are the colors of fall but you can find them all over Conway County in the middle of July.

"It's really developed over just one and a half month period or so. This is what's called a flash drought. In other words, one that comes on very suddenly," says John Robinson with the National Weather Service at Little Rock.

He says hot temperatures and little rainfall since May has caused the U.S. Drought Monitor to put more than 10 percent of the state in the most intense drought category.

70 percent of Arkansas in extreme drought

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KTHV) - Rain and storms on the radar but the drought situation worsens in Arkansas.

The lack of rain continues to be a worrisome topic of conservation. The entire state is experiencing some sort of drought condition, with a majority in the exceptional or extreme category. Ironic to think that three months ago, none of the state had a lack of rain.

Many factors go into examining drought situations. Chris Buonanno, the science and operations officer at Little Rock's NWS office pointed out there are many different aspects when drawing up the drought monitor; precipitation deficit, soil moisture and also stream flows are some to name a few.

Parts of Arkansas have the highest drought classification possible: exceptional. As you'll see in the video, areas with exceptional drought are centered in the middle of the State.

AC units working overtime in extreme heat

LITTLER ROCK, Ark. (KTHV) - The summer sun is heating up the state of Arkansas to record temperatures in the low 100s!

Memorial Day forecast

High pressure continues to keep us sunny and warm for Memorial Day.  Isolated t-storm chance less than 10% with the heating of the day.    Sunscreen, lots of water, and frequent breaks if you're going to be outdoors. 

Relief on the way by mid-week: both rain and cooler temperatures.  Best chance looks like Wednesday night and into Thursday.

Monday:  Mostly sunny & windy.  High 93.

Tonight: Partly Cloudy. Low 71.

Weekend forecast

 warm & humid weather pattern will be shaping up for the foreseeable future with only slight rain chances. Temperatures are expected to be in the low to mid-80s over the next several days.

Sunday: More of the Same. High 81.  20% Showers.

Corps issues small craft advisory for Arkansas River

Corps issues small craft advisory for Arkansas River

 CORPS ISSUES SMALL CRAFT ADVISORY FOR ARKANSAS RIVER

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. -  The Army Corps of Engineers has issued a small craft advisory for the Arkansas River in Arkansas because heavy rain has caused flows to rise.  During the high flows, strong currents and large debris can threaten the safety of pleasure craft.

Individuals with livestock and property in lower lying areas along the Arkansas River should continue to monitor conditions and consider moving livestock and property to higher ground.

Flows at Trimble Lock and Dam at Fort Smith were about 100,000 cubic feet per second and climbing.  Flows at Ozark Lock and Dam at Ozark were 80,000 c.f.s. and climbing.

More rain is forecast and could push flows higher or cause the advisory to remain in effect longer.  The National Weather Service updates river stage forecasts twice a day during heavy rain events at www.srh.noaa.gov.

Arkansas Tech Ice Skating

Arkansas Tech students had some chilly fun this afternoon.  They grabbed their coats and gloves and hit the ice for an afternoon of ice skating.

The ice skating was free for students wanting to take a break from the books and relax.  After some time on the ice-- students could warm up with a cup of hot chocolate.

The temporary rink was on campus as part of WonderWeek-- a week designed to promote school spirit and campus unity.