“My heart aches tonight for the residents of Bajaro,” Monterey County Board of Supervisors Chairman Luis Alejo said. said in a tweet. “We were hoping to avoid and prevent this situation, but in a worst-case scenario, the upper reaches of the Bajaro River broke its banks in the middle of the night.”
The local water district warned residents not to drink or cook with the tap water until officials had a chance to test its quality after the system’s wells took in floodwater.
As the sun rose over the state, more than 9,000 residents were still under evacuation orders as California continued to weather what is known as the Atmospheric River, one of the wettest storms on the West Coast. This is the 10th event this season.
By Friday afternoon, the flood levels were already massive. In the San Francisco Bay Area, travelers had to navigate around flooding that closed several roads, including a major highway in Oakland. By Saturday afternoon, approx 32,000 customers in the state About 55,000 customers were without power after being affected on Friday. According to officials, at least two people have died as a result of the recent storms.
The situation continued to deteriorate in the central coastal areas of the state and the Salinas Valley—often called The country’s “salad bowl” Because of the leafy greens and other vegetables grown there. In some parts of the region, roads were flooded and main evacuation routes were impassable. A separate levee breach occurred nearly 150 miles from Pajaro in the community of Cutler in Tulare County, central California.
Forecasters predict that this incessant rain will continue till next week.
Although the main moisture associated with the atmospheric river moves in on Friday, additional moderate to heavy rain is expected in central and northern California late Saturday and into Sunday. Later, another atmospheric river originating near Hawaii is expected to come ashore.
By Tuesday, 3 to 6 inches of rain could fall along the coast, with double-digit realization totals in the highest peaks of the Sierra Nevada. It is forecast to drop another 4 to 8 feet of snow, which could lead to more flooding, rapid snowmelt and avalanches.
A flood watch is in effect for areas below 4,000 feet elevation in central and northern California. The National Weather Service office in Hanford, Calif., said many creeks and rivers that were at flood stage Friday will continue to rise through the weekend.
The weather service began issuing flash flood warnings Friday as creeks and streams turned to roaring speeds combined with heavy rain and snowmelt.
The community of Springville in Tulare County, home to about 1,000 residents along Highway 190, was placed under a severe “flash flood emergency” in the early hours of the morning.
“This is a particularly dangerous situation. Now seek higher ground!” The Hanford office warned.
Drone footage revealed Dozens of homes are floating in water, at least one structure has collapsed and many are on the brink of destruction.
In an online warning to residents, the Tulare County Resource Management Agency described the flooding as “unprecedented.”
Tulare County, southeast of Fresno and northeast of Bakersfield, recorded 4.3 inches of rain in the 24 hours ending Saturday morning. There is three to eight feet of water in the Sierra snowpack — which is high in most places — meaning atmospheric river heat can quickly melt enough water to double the amount dumped into creeks and streams during snowstorms.
Meanwhile, mountain communities in the Sierra are working to sort out where to put their ever-accumulating snow. Although most of the snow falls above 8,000 feet, rain has fallen in the fluffy snow below.
The Central Sierra Snow Lab off Interstate 80 near Donner Pass, near 7,000 feet, measured a “rain-soaked” 9.3 inches of snow on Friday and reached 617 inches since October.
It turned the snow into cement-like mud, which in some cases caused structural collapse. In other cases, high avalanche danger is a concern.