90% of California residents placed under flood watch
San Francisco, Sacramento, and Los Angeles were residents are seeing 1 to 1.25 inches of rainfall per hour and have been facing hurricane-force wind gusts
January 9, 2023 8:21pm
Updated: January 10, 2023 9:52am
More than 90% of California's residents were placed under a flood watch on Monday as the state continues to be hit with torrential downpours and strong winds.
The severe weather conditions come as part of a string of atmospheric rivers that have been hitting the west coast. However, according to the Weather Prediction Center, Monday’s atmospheric river could result in a 1-in-50 or 1-in-100-year rainfall event.
More than 24 million California residents were placed at a moderate risk level of excessive rainfall, including San Francisco, Sacramento, and Los Angeles were residents are seeing 1 to 1.25 inches of rainfall per hour and have been facing hurricane-force wind gusts.
“While some of the forecast rain totals are impressive alone, it is important to note that what really sets this event apart are the antecedent conditions,” the National Weather Service office in San Francisco said.
“Multiple systems over the past week have saturated soil, increased flow in rivers and streams, and truly set the stage for this to become a high-impact event.”
As a result of the downpours, several counties are also experiencing widespread flooding. El Dorado, Monterey, Santa Cruz, Santa Clara, and Alameda countries have issued evacuation warnings for several areas in anticipation of the flooding.
Additionally, residents of Montecito, parts of Santa Barbara, and Summerland were also ordered to evacuate immediately.
“Be prepared to sustain yourself and your household for multiple days if you choose not to evacuate, as you may not be able to leave the area and emergency responders may not be able to access your property in the event of road damage, flooding, or a debris flow,” Santa Barbara County authorities said in a statement.
More than 138,000 homes and businesses were left without electricity on Monday, according to PowerOutage.us.
“Expect widespread power outages, downed trees, and difficult driving conditions,” the National Weather Service in Sacramento tweeted. “Now is the time to prepare if you have not already!”
The weather conditions have affected nearby states, with Nevada, Oregon, Washington, Utah, Arizona, and Wyoming also issuing wind alerts on Monday after seeing more than 74 mph winds.
“We are in the middle of a deadly barrage of winter storms – and California is using every resource at its disposal to protect lives and limit damage,” California Governor Gavin Newsom said in a statement. “We are taking the threat from these storms seriously, and want to make sure that Californians stay vigilant as more storms head our way.”