Approaching storms trigger flood warning


The National Weather Service today issued a flood warning with the upcoming storms later this week.

The warning spans Wednesday through late Saturday night.

The Feather River drainage was specifically mentioned, as well as the northern Sacramento Valley, northeast foothills, western Plumas County, Lassen Volcanic National Park and the west slope of the northern Sierra Nevada.

Areas that suffered from summertime fires are in jeopardy of rock and mud slides. Gusty winds are also forecast, which could drop tree branches onto power lines, causing power outages. Because of the amount of rain expected, the Weather Service warns about urban and creek flooding, tributary and weir overflows, and runoff in bypass areas. The weather service said that major flooding of larger rivers is not expected, although water levels will rise.

Snow levels are not expected to lower, and should stay in the 6,000 to 7,000-foot levels.

The forecast calls for periods of wet and windy weather Wednesday through the weekend with increased weather impacts possible...

Major weather changes are expected across northern California beginning mid-week and continuing through next weekend as a large area of low pressure moves toward the eastern Pacific. Rainfall is expected to begin Wednesday across northern California. This initial system will be followed closely by several more storm systems through the weekend. These storms will have access to deep moisture from the tropical Pacific meaning considerable amounts of precipitation will be likely with each system along with strong gusty southerly winds. Overall precipitation totals for any one area could significantly vary and will depend on where the focus of the heaviest rain from each system sets up. Currently... it appears the focus of heaviest precipitation through the weekend will be mainly to the north of Interstate 80.

The mild southwesterly flow will result in relatively high snow levels through the week... mainly above 6000 feet in the northern mountains and above 7000 feet in the northern Sierra Nevada.

Forecast confidence is high that this series of storm systems will impact the region. However with several days until these low pressure systems affect the region... details on timing and intensity of each storm that passes through the region will become clearer. Impressive rainfall totals are likely across much of the region which could increase the flood potential by next weekendas the ground becomes saturated and water GOES directly into runoff rather than seeping into soils resulting in rising water levels on the small rivers and streams.

Potential impacts include:

*urban and rural flooding especially for flood prone areas.

*Major rises in water levels for rivers and streams with possible small steam flooding.

*Moderate to heavy rain and gusty winds may bring down tree branches and trees. Local power outages will be possible.

*Mud and rock slides likely and possible debris flows for recent burn scars.

Stay tuned to the latest National Weather Service statements or your local media outlet for further details on this potentially high impact series of storms.



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