Extreme winds knock out power in Sacramento as California faces new wave of storms

Heavy the winds hit the Sacramento, Calif., area late Saturday, toppling trees and knocking out power for more than 300,000 customers, as the state braced for another round of storms this week that could bring additional flooding, more breakdowns and damage to trees, as well as dangerous mudslides and mountain snow.
Wind speeds reached nearly 70 mph Saturday night and early Sunday in the Sacramento area. At least one person was killed, a homeless woman struck by a falling tree, the Sacramento Fire Department said.
Sunday evening, around 62,000 customers remained without power. A Sacramento Municipal District spokesperson said the company had dozens of crews on the ground, but the extensive damage caused by the storm meant that some customers would be without power overnight.
Parker Wilbourn, fire captain for the Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District, said they are responding with an “everyone on deck” approach. Saturday night’s storm was particularly devastating, he said, following the rain, power outages and flooding the city has already experienced.
The storm followed a week of downpours across California that caused widespread flooding and downed countless trees. Six people were killed, including a toddler struck by a tree that crashed into his Sonoma County home.
“Each of these storms only gets worse from the previous storm,” Wilbourn said. The concern now, he said, is what happens when more rain hits in the coming days. “Our soils are already saturated. So it would just take, you know, a few more inches of rain and we could potentially see another catastrophic event. »
The state is hit by a family of atmospheric rivers – huge plumes of water vapor in the sky – in rapid succession. The strongest is expected to arrive Monday through Tuesday, renewing meteorologists’ concerns of widespread damage.
“The West Coast remains under attack from a relentless parade of cyclones that form and intensify over the Pacific Ocean while moving directly toward the North American continent,” National forecasters said. Time The service’s weather forecast center said Sunday morning.
Heavy snow and rain fell in northern and central California on Saturday evening, but began to clear in many places on Sunday.
In San Francisco, the sun shone amid scattered clouds in the morning and residents took advantage of the drier weather. More than 50 volunteers gathered at Manny’s, a cafe and civic gathering space in the heart of the city’s Mission district, for a nightclub-themed trash pickup. Music blared through the cafe as volunteers of all ages, dressed in sparkly orange construction vests and disco ball necklaces, gathered gloves and gear before spreading out onto the surrounding blocks.
Although a group meets every Sunday to help spruce up the neighborhood, the organization has gone the extra mile to recruit more volunteers for the cleanup after the storm. “Everyone was pumped up today to get to work and get together after everyone was alone in their homes during the rain storms,” said Rosamand Carr, a 26-year-old financial analyst who has assisted in cleaning.
Despite everything, she is preparing for the next round of storms. “I have my puzzles, I have my book,” she said. She has filled several water bottles with water and has candles and flashlights on hand in case the power goes out. “Other than that, we mentally prepare ourselves to hide inside,” she said.
A day earlier, Elijah Kaplan, a 29-year-old video editor who lives in the Presidio neighborhood, had resigned himself to waiting longer to carry out major repairs to his apartment, which sits under a hill and where water continued to seep into the walls every day. He’s made a habit of donning hiking boots and wading through knee-deep mud to dig a trench to redirect water away from his home, but he knows more storms are coming.
“It’s been a huge pain and disruption for all of our lives, but we also recognize that we’ve been through a drought,” Kaplan said. “Even this amount of torrential rain is still just a drop in the bucket for what California needs.”
Monday morning, what some weather bureau forecasters in Los Angeles call the “main show” begins. A powerful atmospheric river will start in the northern part of the state on Monday before moving south through the day and into Tuesday.
According to the Weather Prediction Center, many regions could see an amount of precipitation that only occurs once every five or 10 years.
Rainfall totals could reach 2 to 4 inches over most areas and could be above 8 inches along the Coast and Coast Ranges and along the western slope of the Sierra.
“The longevity and intensity of the rains, combined with the cumulative effect of successive heavy rains dating back to late December, will result in widespread and potentially significant flooding impacts,” the Center for Weather Forecasting said Sunday morning.
Forecasters said they expect isolated minor to major river floods, with potentially record river levels.
Forecasters were also expecting damaging winds of up to 60 mph from Monday to Tuesday, which could lead to more widespread power outages in the region. The thunderstorms could include a brief tornado along or near parts of California’s central coast.
At a press conference on Sunday afternoon, Governor Gavin Newsom stressed the danger posed by this storm. “These floods are deadly and have now become more deadly than even wildfires here in the state of California,” he said.
He and other officials said the state has resources in place to deal with the coming rains and floods, including rescue helicopters, deep-sea vehicles and temporary shelters.
In higher areas of the Sierra, the threat involved extreme snow that could exceed 5 feet. “Heavy snow loads will increase the threat of avalanches and infrastructure damage,” forecasters from the Weather Prediction Center said.
Across the Sierra, the winter storm severity index is at an all-time high, meaning travel is not advised and widespread and widespread road closures and infrastructure disruptions may occur.
This stormy system will be warmer than some of the previous ones. Snowfall will start at 5,000 feet but will exceed 6,500 to 8,000 feet throughout the day, which means areas of fresh snow will see rain, allowing it to melt and increase the amount of snowfall. water entering streams and rivers. Rising snow levels raised fears of flooding, the Sacramento National Weather Service office said.
This stormy system should start to fade on Tuesday. On Wednesday, another system will start, although it should be weaker than the previous one. However, any rainfall will fall on a region sensitive to additional rainfall and could exacerbate swelling in rivers and streams.
There could be a brief pause before another atmospheric river forecast for the weekend, bringing heavier rainfall and the threat of flooding.
Forecasters with the National Weather Service’s San Francisco Bay Area office said there was a 60% to 80% chance the wetter-than-normal pattern would continue over the next two weeks.


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