Forecasters: Possibility of storms, severe weather in parts of Arkansas Monday

National Weather Service issues tornado watch for 5 counties

This graphic from the National Weather Service highlights areas in Arkansas that could see severe weather on Monday, Nov. 20, 2023. (National Weather Service/X)

Central and southern Arkansas have a chance at seeing storms that could produce severe weather on Monday afternoon, the National Weather Service said. 

Storms in the state Monday could have winds that are as strong as 60 mph, hail that is as big as a quarter and the tornado potential is low, the weather service said on X, the social media platform formerly known as Twitter. 

More severe weather is likely to the south of Arkansas, the weather service said, and the greatest threat for severe weather will be in southeastern portions of the state. 

“Rain and thunderstorms are expected to persist across much of the state through tonight. Only a localized threat for an isolated severe thunderstorm and heavy rain is expected through midnight, mainly across southeast Arkansas,” a hazardous weather outlook from the weather service said. 

The National Weather Service has issued a tornado watch for Ashley, Lafayette, Chicot, Union, and Columbia counties. The watch is set to remain in effect until 7 p.m. 

Parts of southern Arkansas, including Texarkana and El Dorado, are at a slight risk of severe weather, the weather service said. 

A slight risk means that severe thunderstorms are expected to be few or isolated, according to the weather service. 

Much of the central Arkansas, including Pine Bluff, Little Rock, Hot Springs, Conway and Mena, are at a marginal risk for severe weather. 

The National Weather Service defines a marginal risk as isolated storms that may be limited in duration, coverage or intensity. 

“The forecast calls for a half inch to an inch and a half of rain at most locations in Arkansas through Monday night,” the weather service said in a tweet.