California Braces for More Storms after 12 Killed


Staff member
Oct 7, 2008

California is bracing for more severe weather this week, with forecasters warning of an incoming "relentless parade of cyclones".
The US state has already suffered a week of torrential downpours and damaging winds that killed 12 people in 10 days, Governor Gavin Newsom said.
More than 120,000 people are still without power as of Monday morning.
The governor warned on Sunday that the most brutal weather is due in the next 48 hours.

"We expect to see the worst of it still ahead of us," Governor Newsom said at a news conference. "Don't test fate."
This new round of severe weather will bring heavy rain on already flooded rivers, damaging winds that are expected to topple trees and power lines, and heavy snow in northeast California.

The US National Weather Service (NWS) said the heaviest and most widespread rain will likely occur around Tuesday morning and afternoon, and have issued a flood warning in areas around Los Angeles, including Orange County and the San Bernardino County Mountains.
The Sacramento Valley is also under a flood advisory. Schools in and around Sacramento have cancelled classes on Monday in anticipation of the storm and amidst widespread power outages.
US president Joe Biden declared a state of emergency for California on Monday, which allows the Federal Emergency Management Agency, also known as FEMA, to provide disaster relief.
In the last week, California has experienced two overlapping weather phenomena - an atmospheric river, where an airborne stream of dense moisture flows in from the ocean, and a bomb cyclone, a storm with a rapid drop in pressure that creates a cyclone effect.
Last week's storms inflicted widespread damage in northern California and dumped record-breaking rain.
The storm damaged homes and businesses, and killed at least 12 people. Among the victims was a toddler who died after a redwood tree fell onto a mobile home in northern California.

A woman who lived in a homeless encampment along the Sacramento River also died on Saturday when a tree branch fell on her tent.
Much of the area hit by heavy rainfall has been under extreme drought conditions. Last year, California issued caps on how much water residents can use in an effort to conserve its depleting supply.
Despite the rain, much of the state remains under moderate to extreme drought warnings, according to the US Drought Monitor.
Experts have said that it would take many years of rain to reverse the two-decade-long drought that has hit the western US.


Residents scramble to collect belongings Wednesday before floodwater rises in Merced, California.

The historic storms devastating much of California have turned entire neighborhoods into lakes, unleashed sewage into floodwater and killed at least 17 people.

And there’s more to come. About 5 million people are under flood watches Wednesday as yet another atmospheric river is bringing more rain to California.

“The state has been experiencing drought for the last four years, and now we have storm upon storm,” California Lt. Gov. Eleni Kounalakis said Wednesday.

“We’ve had six storms in the last two weeks. This is the kind of weather you would get in a year and we compressed it just into two weeks.”

The flood watches Wednesday are primarily in Northern and Central California, including Sacramento, the North Bay and Redding. That barely leaves enough time for residents in flood-ravaged neighborhoods to assess the devastation before the next storm.

“It’s just brown water everywhere. And it’s just rushing through – it was going fast,” Fenton Grove resident Caitlin Clancy said.