California braces for more storms and flooding as 300,000 left without power

© Justin Sullivan/Getty Images/AFP

California braced for more stormy weather with rain sweeping into the northern part the state and the San Francisco Bay area, preceding a series of powerful incoming Pacific storms and raising the potential for road flooding, rising rivers and mudslides on soils already saturated after days of rain.

The National Weather Service warned of a “relentless parade of atmospheric rivers” over the coming week, producing heavy rain and mountain snow. Atmospheric river storms are long plumes of moisture stretching out into the Pacific and are capable of dropping staggering amounts of rain and snow.

The agency's Sacramento office tweeted early Sunday that parts of the Sacramento Valley were experiencing “strong winds with gusts up to 60 mph,” as well as “numerous trees and power lines down with power outages.”

More than 300,000 customers had their electricity knocked out in and around the state's capital, according to a Sacramento Municipal Utility District online map of outages overnight.

The wet weather comes after days of rain in California from Pacific storms. A series of recent weather systems have knocked out power to thousands, flooded streets, battered the coastline and caused at least six deaths.

The first of the heavier storms was due to arrive Monday, and the weather service issued a flood watch for a large swath of Northern and Central California with 6 to 12 inches (15 to 30 centimeters) of rain expected through Wednesday in the Sacramento-area foothills.


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