NPR: Anticipating Dangerous Floods with Life-threatening Potential

California Braces for Life-Threatening Flooding

California Braces for Life-Threatening Flooding

Flooded Road in Long Beach, California

California is preparing for the arrival of a second atmospheric river, a narrow channel of wind that transports water vapor, which is expected to cause life-threatening flooding in certain areas of the state. This upcoming atmospheric river, concentrated primarily in Central and Southern California, is predicted to be more powerful than the first one that caused localized flooding along the West Coast earlier this week.

What is an Atmospheric River?

An atmospheric river is a relatively narrow channel of wind that carries large amounts of water vapor to the West Coast. In some cases, these powerful rivers can reach all the way to the Sierra Nevada mountains.

Forecast and Concerns

The National Weather Service in Los Angeles warns that this storm is expected to bring unprecedented rainfall to the region starting from Saturday night through early next week, with the most concerning period being from Sunday to early Monday. The agency predicts rain rates of “half to one inch per hour” during the storm’s peak, putting all areas, including densely populated urban areas, at risk of life-threatening flooding.

Potential Risks and Preparations

Officials are advising people, especially those residing near rivers, streams, or mountainous areas, to make necessary preparations. Los Angeles Mayor Karen Bass expresses confidence in the city’s preparedness and urges residents to take commonsense precautions. The NWS highlights the potential for mudslides and rockslides in the mountains and foothills, and evacuations may be required in areas previously affected by wildfires.

High Winds in Certain Areas

In addition to the heavy rainfall, the atmospheric river is also expected to bring strong winds to San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara counties, as well as the Antelope Valley. Wind gusts of up to 80 mph are possible in the mountains.

Despite the impending challenges, California is taking proactive measures to mitigate the risks associated with this impending storm. By staying informed and heeding the warnings of officials, residents can work together to ensure their safety and the protection of their communities.

Read More of this Story at – 2024-02-03 13:38:57

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