Latest California atmospheric river storm quickly turns deadly

Latest California atmospheric river storm quickly turns deadly

U.S.


/ CBS/AP

Storms cause deadly destruction in California


Storms cause deadly destruction in California

02:00

The Latest in a series atmospheric river storms It rolled into California Wednesday, and was already being blamed on at least two deaths. It brought heavy rain and high winds that threatened widespread flooding. This prompted evacuation orders in many areas. One of the most high-risk coastal towns was hit by mudslides in 2018, which claimed 23 lives.

According to CBS News, the storm swept over a redwood tree in Sonoma County, and it crashed into a mobile house. It killed a toddler. Lunardi said that the boy was between 2 and 2 1/2 years of age. His parents were not hurt. Lunardi stated that rescuers couldn’t use helicopters because of the weather so he took the boy in his pickup truck to nearby paramedics.

Fairfield, a San Francisco Bay Area police station, reports that a 19-year old resident was killed when her vehicle crashed into a utility pole while driving on a partially-flooded road.

California is hit by a massive storm that brings floods and powerful winds.
After being blown to the ground by strong winds on January 4, 2023 in South San Francisco, the Valero canopy rests on its own.

Getty Images


As of Thursday morning, California time, approximately 186,000 customers were still without power in the state, mainly in the storm-wracked region. According to PowerOutage.us.

The storm was expected drop up to 6 inches of rainfall in parts of the San Francisco Bay Area. Most of the region would remain under flood watches into Thursday night. Forecasters predicted that the storm would reach its peak intensity in Southern California overnight and into Thursday morning. Santa Barbara and Ventura counties will likely see the most rainfall.

“We anticipate that it may be one of most challenging and impactful series of thunderstorms to touch down California in the past five years,” stated Nancy Ward, the new director of California Governor’s Office of Emergency Services.

The National Weather Service Bay Area office spoke out about the storm’s potential and called it “truly brutal system that we are watching and must be taken seriously.” According to CBS Bay Area.

According to the station, the rain from the latest atmospheric storm was pounding Northern California and the Bay Area Wednesday evening. It brought widespread flooding, mudslides, and traffic problems while gusty winds brought down trees.Tens of thousands left without power.”

Severe Weather
On January 4, 2023, floodwaters surround an empty vehicle on a road in Oakland.

Godofredo A. Vasquez / AP


London Breed, the San Francisco Mayor, stated at a press conference that the city was “preparing to fight a war.” Crews cleared storm drains and moved homeless people into shelters. They also handed out emergency supplies and ponchos for those who refused.

Residents were given so many sandbags that supplies temporarily ran out.

Strong winds gusting up to 85 mph caused cancellations of more than 70 flights from San Francisco International Airport. They also downed trees, power lines and forced the cancellations of more than 70 flights. A tree fell onto a family’s car and was rescued by firefighters from the city. Although no injuries were reported, the fire department reported that “large pieces” of glass fell from the Fox Plaza tower near Civic Center. The fire department tweeted that it was “highly probable” that the damage to the skyscraper was caused by wind.

More than 100,000 customers were left without power in the San Francisco Bay Area, Central Coast and San Francisco by the new storm.

CBS Bay Area Reports A group of more than 200 schoolchildren were evacuated from a YMCA science camp at Boulder Creek Wednesday because of the approaching storm.

One of three so-called storms is the storm Atmospheric river Storms have raged in the drought-stricken region for the past week.

NOVATO, CALIFORNIA – JANUARY 4, 2023: Warning signals for drivers
Before a severe storm swept through the area of Novato, Calif. on January 4, 2023, warning messages were posted along US Highway 101 in Marin County.

Melina Mara/The Washington Post via Getty Images


California Gov. Gavin Newsom declared a State of Emergency to help with the quick response to another severe storm that struck just days before.

Evacuations were ordered in Southern California for residents who live in areas that were affected by the Santa Barbara County wildfires. Heavy rains forecast for tonight could cause flooding and debris flows.

Officials from the county didn’t have an exact number of people who were under evacuation orders. Susan Klein-Rothschild was a spokesperson for the county’s emergency operation center. She said that sheriff’s deputies went door to door and contacted at most 480 people.

Montecito was one of the towns that had to be evacuated. Five years ago, huge boulders, mud, and debris swept through the town from the coastline. 23 people were killed and more than 100 homes destroyed. Many celebrities call the town home, including Oprah Winfrey, Prince Harry, and Meghan, his wife.

Chief Kevin Taylor of Montecito Fire Department stated that “what we’re talking here is a lot water coming off of the top of hills, coming down to the creeks, and streams, and as it comes down it gains momentum and this is what the initial danger is.”

Stable cliffs close to PCH
As heavy rains threaten to cause road-closing landlides, unstable cliffs tower over the Pacific Coast Highway in Dana Point.

Robert Gauthier / Los Angeles Times via Getty Images


In anticipation of flooding and rock fall, a 45-mile stretch along the coast Highway 1 through Big Sur was shut down Wednesday evening. A 25-mile stretch of Highway 101 was also closed due to downed trees.

Drivers were advised to avoid driving on roads during heavy snowfalls in the mountains.

The storm arrived days after the storm. New Year’s Eve downpour This led to the evacuation of many people from rural Northern California communities, as well as the rescue of several motorists who were stranded on flooded roads. A few levees were damaged south of Sacramento.

Authorities in South Sacramento County discovered a body inside a submerged vehicle on Wednesday. This was one of the four flood victims from that storm.

Evacuation orders were in effect in Santa Cruz County’s Paradise Park, along the swiftly moving San Lorenzo River and in areas along Pajaro River. Boulder Creek, Ben Lomond, and Felton were all advised to evacuate residents who fled wildfires in Santa Cruz Mountains in 2020.


California will be battered by storms throughout the weekend

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Authorities in Sonoma County issued an evacuation notice for several towns along the Russian River. The river was expected to flood on Thursday.

The storms will not be enough to end the state’s ongoing drought. It is now in its fourth year. The U.S. Drought Monitor revealed that California is experiencing severe to severe drought. Officials stated that the state’s major reservoirs have ample room to hold more water from the storm since they are low.

Trees that have been stressed by years of little rain are more likely now to fall if the ground is suddenly saturated with heavy winds. This could lead to widespread power outages and flood hazards, according to Karla Nemeth (director of the state’s Department of Water Resources).

During an emergency briefing, she stated that “we are in the middle a flood emergency as well as a drought emergency.”

Reporting by Patrick Torphy, CBS News

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