Multiple weather systems will strike California early next week, continuing the Golden State’s flood misery. After a bomb cyclone pattern brought floods, landslides and knocked out power to thousands over the last two days, forecasters say there will be no let up for the state. At least two people have died in Wednesday and Thursday’s storm, following three dying over New Year’s.
AccuWeather’s meteorologists have warned that the storm from Sunday to Tuesday could be the “biggest of the bunch”, with it being the third since December.
“After a couple of weak storms [relatively speaking] this weekend, a bigger storm will arrive early next week and then another big storm the following week,” AccuWeather lead long-range meteorologist Paul Pastelok said.
The agency then added the storm could see the highest amount of rain focused on central portions of California.
“That storm is likely to bring higher snow levels when compared to the storm into Thursday and the storms this weekend”, it added.
As a result, a combo of heavy rain and melting snow may feature, leading to a surge into San Joaquin and Sacramento Valley streams and rivers.
“Along with the ongoing risk of life-threatening incidents from flash flooding and mudslides for each storm, the potential for a catastrophic flood event will increase as the stormy pattern continues,” AccuWeather Chief Meteorologist Jon Porter also said.
“The energy for the storm train started over Asia several weeks ago, expanded over the Pacific in late December and has now gotten the subtropical part of the jet stream involved,” Mr Pastelok said.
“This setup will continue until around Jan. 16 or 17 for California.”
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It comes after a 19-year-old woman from Fairfield was killed Wednesday morning when her car hydroplaned on a partially flooded road and crashed into a utility pole, according to police.
The second fatality was reported on Wednesday evening in Occidental, where a tree fell on a home and killed a 2-year-old boy.
The atmospheric river that fueled the system was unlike the one that soaked California on New Year’s Eve and killed at least three.
This week’s storm was classified as a “pineapple express” as the moisture originated from the tropical Pacific Ocean near Hawaii, which is the nation’s leading producer of pineapples.
The Weather Channel’s forecast for the week ahead holds that Friday sees much of the state dry for a brief reprieve, but “flooding will remain possible as runoff continues”.
However, they then added for Saturday and Sunday: “Mulitple disturbances carrying another atmospheric river will hit the northern half of California.
“This could contribute to flooding, mudslides, and rockslides.”
In their forecast, they also warned: “The next major storm will arrive and impact much of the state on Monday, and last into at least early Tuesday.
“Multiple inches of rain are likely in this storm alone. Details about this storm are still somewhat uncertain.”