The Bay Area is getting a feel of what its like to live in rainy Seattle this week as a series of storms hit one after the other.
A heavy band of rain started in the North Bay Thursday morning and worked its way south throughout the day. The system will hang around overnight and could linger through Friday and maybe even last through Saturday morning.
A flash flood watch was issued Thursday for the coast and North Bay counties as a precaution to warn people to the potential of fast rising water. Also, the California Highway Patrol issued a high-wind advisory for the Golden Gate Bridge.
There are more watches and warnings set to go into effect Friday including a Bay Area wide wind advisory as gusty winds blow through with the potential to knock down trees and power lines.
A high-surf advisory will also go into effect Friday morning. Swells are anticipated to reach up to 16 feet, and local beaches may experience rip currents and erosion from the strong waves and surf.
The Coast Guard is anticipating a busy weekend as high winds and heavy seas are expected. A small craft advisory and a gale warning are in effect for parts of the central and northern coast as the potential storm could produce strong southerly winds, endangering mariners and setting vessels adrift.
The weather system that is currently bearing down on the Bay Area is quite a bit slower than the system that hit Wednesday. That means less winds, but a lot more water content.
Rain is expected to be the highest with this storm with totals anywhere from one to three inches. Highest totals will be over the North Bay Hills where rain totals could top four inches.
Rain will only taper off as yet another wave of energy arrives Sunday.
Sunday's system could create power outages, downed trees and possible flooding to the already saturated ground.
With the current model projections, the isolated flooding risk will be the highest on roads and rivers from Friday to Sunday where rain will simply run out of place to drain with our quick succession of storms.
Local creeks, small rivers and streams will be at the greatest risk for quick rising water. Large North Bay rivers could rise as much as ten to 20 feet. The Russian River is one of them. So far there is no expectation that the river will hit flood stage. The latest estimates from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Adminsitration show it reaching 17.3 feet, which is six feet lower than flood stage.
With some slightly warmer air for the Sierra snow will stack up at least 10 inches and mix with rain at times. This will not be as major as earlier storms this season. You will need to hit 6,000 to 7,000 feet to find any snow accumulations. Either way roads will be slick and not fun to travel.
- Thursday a storm will slowly make it way into the Bay Area starting in the North Bay. There will be rain that slowly pushes south overnight.
- Friday morning will see heavy rain.
- Saturday will see morning rain that turns to afternoon of isolated sun and/or thurderstorms.
- Sunday will see a bigger weather system hit the entire Bay Area. This one will bring both rain and wind and comes with the biggest threat to power outages, downed tree and mudslides because the ground will be thoroughly saturated.