California storms
© AP Photo/Richard Vogel
Department of Water and Power employees work in the pouring rain to clear a fallen tree from a road in the Hollywood hills in Los Angeles, Thursday, Jan. 17, 2019.
Amid a relentless series of storms, a powerful storm has been wreaking havoc in California from Wednesday into Thursday, further raising concerns of flooding, mudslides and avalanches.

On Monday and Tuesday, Los Angeles received over 1.75 inches of rain, and San Diego picked up just over 0.55 of an inch of rain. On Wednesday, they received two-thirds of an inch and 0.11 of an inch, respectively, AccuWeather meteorologists reported.

The series of storms prompted officials to put communities on alert for mudslides and flooding, as well as creating dangerous travel conditions.

Toppled trees, snarled roads and downed power lines could be found all around Northern California on Wednesday, sometimes with deadly consequences, Associated Press (AP) News reports.

At least six deaths have been reported during this week, as storms pass through the region.

Over 20,000 people were without power Wednesday night, according to Pacific Gas & Electric.


Blizzard conditions blanketed the higher elevations of the Sierra Nevada, prompting a blizzard warning for much of the Sierra Nevada and Lake Tahoe on Wednesday night.

Winds gusted up to 164 mph at the summit of Mammoth Mountain, California, on Thursday morning, according to AccuWeather Extreme Meteorologist Reed Timmer. Winds this strong are comparable to that found in a major hurricane.

Heavy snowfall, multiple spin-outs and a jack-knifed big rig led to the closure of a major Northern California freeway in the Sierra Nevada, AP News reports.

The heavy snowfall also prompted an avalanche warning in the Sierra Nevada on Wednesday.

Runoff flowed from the San Francisco Bay Area to the Sierra Nevada foothills and from Central Coast counties to Los Angeles and the inland region to the east, AP News reports.

Concerns for debris flows and mudslides were especially high in communities near burn scars of recent wildfires, such as in areas affected by the Camp Fire in November.

A flash flood watch was in effect for the area burned by the Camp Fire, the Northern California town of Paradise.


Areas under evacuation orders included parts of fire-scarred Malibu, where public schools were closed. Several vital canyon roads in the area were closed due rock fall danger.

"If you're near a wildfire burn area, pay close attention to alerts and warnings from your local officials," the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) said in a tweet.

Rain and winds forced the cancellation of more than 140 flights at San Francisco International Airport, AP News reports.

Rain and fog in the mountains made visibility difficult for motorists in the San Diego area, the National Weather Service (NWS) tweeted on Thursday.

NWS issued a high surf warning through Friday in San Francisco County, with 30-foot breakers along the coast of the North Bay, Monterey Bay and Big Sur.

Coastal Flood Advisory was put in effect from Thursday night until Friday morning in Los Angeles. Large surf and high tides combine to generate flooding of low areas along the coast line, according to NWS Los Angeles.

Floodwaters inundated the Ventura Beach RV park off Main Street and the 101 highway on Thursday morning. The Ventura River remains just above flood stage at 10 a.m. PST but has peaked and is starting to drop, NWS tweeted.