Weather reports say that a Pacific storm is moving towards the dry California, which could mean that the drought season is over. Weather officials say that although the California rain is a very good news, it could also bring some bad ones: the heavy rain may cause mudflows on the hillsides that were scorched by recent wildfires.
A light rain has begun falling earlier today, but weather officials are expecting heavier downpours later in the afternoon.
Awaiting the California rain, there were storm watches posted for a large region of the Sierra Nevada. This is where the California state water supply is stored as a snowpack. Some predicted that there is a significant amount of water stored there, but other are saying that the water might not be enough to end the drought.
The delight of those who heard the news about the California rain was tempered by the threat of mudflows and debris that could come from the California areas where wildfires burned all the vegetation that kept the soil stable.
A small storm on Sunday blocked the Pacific Coast Highway, west of Malibu with mud brought from the Santa Monica Mountains. The mountains were denuded by a huge wildfire last year and transformed the area into a mudflow hazard in heavy storms.
The mud was cleared away but the debris that overflowed still kept the highway blocked and will not be reopened in the nearest future.
Patrick Chandler from the Department of Transportation from California made an official statement saying:
“We’re going to have to wait until the next storm passes.”
The residents are preparing for the California rain by putting sandbags in order to protect their houses, especially in foothill cities close to Los Angeles.
The recent California rains are helping some cities recover from the drought and reach the normal rain amounts per year.
The State Department of Water Resources said that the Sierra Nevada snowpack, which counts for the most California water supply is at 24% of normal for this time of the year.
The weather people say that after this California rain, others will follow.