When It Rains, It Pours: ‘Storm of the Decade’ Strikes California

The Golden State lost a little of its gleam this weekend when storms brought some of the heaviest rains California has seen in years. Friday’s storm system was caused by the “Pineapple Express,” a phenomenon that brings warm air up to California from the Pacific Ocean near Hawaii.  This storm brought up to 8 inches of rain to many cities up and down the West Coast, leaving residents to kayak through flooded parking lots and streets, or sometimes ride horses through flooded trails.

On the heels of these heavy rains, a small tornado in Los Angeles caused by the storm system damaged at least five homes Friday. The storm system also brought 19 inches of snow to the Sierra Nevadas.

Storms closed schools from Sonoma to Santa Cruz. Car crashes spiked around Los Angeles when the rains were heaviest, rising from the usual 40 to around 147 in a five-hour period. Thousands across the state were left without power.

But among the worst consequences were heavy winds and rain that sent rocks and mud careening down hillsides. 13 homes were buried in debris by Camarillo Springs, and 2 were killed.

Experts measured a billion gallons of water fell across California on Friday. However this is not enough  to cure California’s drought. NASA estimated that California would need 11 trillion gallons of water to recover from its current drought.


Winds off the coast of California last Thursday. (Photo: earth.nullschool.net)






WeatherBug Meteorologists predict that a few inches of rain could be on the way for California this week, though the impact should be milder than last week’s wild weather.

Stay Safe! Know Before™.

The WeatherBug – Earth Networks Team

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This entry was posted in Drought, Flooding, General, Nature.