Much of area continues high risk for severe weather

Published: Mar. 30, 2023 at 8:49 AM CDT|Updated: Mar. 31, 2023 at 4:21 PM CDT
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JONESBORO, Ark. (KAIT) - With severe storms packing high winds, flooding rains, and possible tornadoes expected to move through Region 8 Friday afternoon, several schools have announced they are closing early.

Severe Weather graphic
Severe Weather graphic(KAIT)

School Closings

  • Arkansas State University closing at 1 p.m.
  • Bay Public Schools dismissing at 1:30 p.m.
  • Brookland Public Schools will dismiss at 1 p.m., with buses leaving at 1:30
  • Greene County Tech School District dismissing early; PreK car line will start at 11:50 a.m.; Kindergarten car line will start at 12:15 p.m.; all other car lines will start at 12:30; buses will run 2.5 hours early
  • Jonesboro Public Schools dismissing at 1 p.m.
  • Jackson County School District dismissing early; preschool from 11:30 to noon; TES car line at 12:10; THS dismissal at 12:20; buses leaving at 12:30 p.m.
  • Nettleton Public Schools dismissing at 1 p.m.
  • Paragould School District dismissing at 1 p.m.; buses running 2 hours early
  • Riverside Public Schools dismiss at 1:15 p.m., buses depart at 1:30 p.m.
  • St. Mary’s Catholic School and Preschool dismissing at 1 p.m.
  • Westside Consolidated School District dismissing at 1 p.m.

For the latest school closings, click here.


The Craighead County Office of Emergency Management announced the following shelters will be open:

  • Craighead County Eastern District Courthouse, 107 Cobean Blvd., Lake City
  • City of Monette City Hall, 119 N. Edmonds, Monette
  • City of Brookland Shelter, 407 Holman
  • Greater Vision Church, 529 E. Court St. in Paragould, open at 1 p.m.
  • Hardy Gym, 203 School St.
  • Jonesboro Public School (Douglas MacArthur Jr. High School, 1615 Wilkins Ave.) opens to the public at 2 p.m.
  • Monette storm shelters (Masonic Lodge on North 139, Senior Center on South Williams, City Park on Virginia Avenue, and the fire department on North Edmonds) open at noon
  • Nettleton Public Schools (Fox Meadow Elementary, 2305 Fox Meadow Lane) open to public at 3:30 p.m.
  • Nettleton Public Schools (University Heights Elementary, 300 Bowling Lane) open to public at 3:30 p.m.
  • Nettleton Public Schools (Nettleton STEAM) open to public at 3:30 p.m.
  • Riverside High School, 601 Catfish Dr. in Lake City, opens at 1:30 p.m
  • West Elementary School, 2001 Hwy. 18 in Lake City, open at 1:30 p.m.

Data is showing that severe weather will be moving into the area Friday afternoon.

“We are expecting strong to severe thunderstorms to affect all of Region 8 Friday afternoon and evening,” said Meteorologist Aaron Castleberry. “It is something we have been looking at and talking about for the majority of this week.”

Much of the area has been under a medium risk for severe weather since Monday, but newer data shows the majority of Region 8 under a high risk.

“We are expecting to see storms develop out in our western counties by 2 to 3 p.m. As they move farther to the east, the storms will have the ingredients to produce strong winds, some hail, and tornadoes,” he explained.

Best places to take cover are in an interior room with no windows.
Best places to take cover are in an interior room with no windows.(Region 8 News)

Castleberry added that we could see some scattered showers during the morning, but those should not be severe.

The weather system should move out of the area and across the Mississippi River by 10 p.m.

Types of storms
Types of storms(Region 8 News)

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