California pounded by Pacific storms

California dealing with widespread flooding

California can’t catch a break as a series of rain storms is pounding the coast from North to South. Earlier this month the Oroville Dam in northern California was in crisis mode as the regular spillway developed a large hole and started to erode the hillside below the dam. In a rare move, dam officials decided to use the emergency spillway to quickly lower the reservoir. That had to be stopped as water started to badly erode the ground forcing about 200 000 people living below the dam to evacuate.

They have since been allowed to return to their homes. Workers are working 24 hours a day attempting to shore up the ground in case the reservoir will need to be drained.

This past weekend a storm hit the state causing landslides, flooding and loss of life.

Salinas was flooded. A local state of emergency was declared as flood waters coursed through the streets. Adding to the danger were gale force winds which toppled trees and electric wires. 

Emergency workers rescued over 200 people trapped by the water which was contaminated with sewage, garbage and engine fuel.

Residents living near rivers have had to evacuate from many towns. A homeless encampment on the banks of the San Jose River were overwhelmed by flood waters. Some of the people had to climb trees to avoid drowning.

Some of the rain storms have continued to damage properties in Nevada. Dayton, Nevada had an evacuation for some residents.

The storms have eased off for now but more rain is expected towards the end of the week. The series of storms predicted to hit California originate over the warm Pacific and line up much like a river in the sky.

It is expected that as the world’s climate warms, more extreme weather events will occur. 


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