Finally! Storm Brings Rain to Bay Area

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    NEWSLETTERS

    John P. Wise/NBCNewYork.com
    The storm door is offically open in the Bay Area.

    A storm sitting off the coast of California is set to drop rain on the Bay Area for the first time in what seems like months.

    The system is moving from the west to the east and is hitting the Peninsula and the South Bay first before getting to the North Bay and the East Bay.

    NBC Bay Area meteorologist Craig Herrera said it should not be a large amount of rain, but rather a "consistent" dose of rain that could last all day.

    This development is a welcome relief for millions of Californians who, despite their appreciation for the sunshine, have been getting worried about the lack of water falling from the sky lately.

    The state is facing possibly its biggest drought since the early 1990s and several Bay Area water agencies have issued warnings that mandatory water rationing is imminent.

    The good news, Herrera said, is that more rain is expected to come after this storm passes through.

    "Another storm is coming on Friday and we expect rain for much of that day as well," he said. "We will have a somewhat cold, breezy break on Saturday as the rain moves to the Central Valley and Southern California. But on Sunday and Monday we might see more rain. We'll also get another foot of snow from these storms in the Sierra by Saturday morning."

    Of course what everyone really wants to know is -- will we get more rain after that -- in amounts that will kick the drought away from our shores?

    "There's just no way to tell," Herrera said. "You just don't know. No forecaster can reliably predict anything past 10 days."

    Odds are, unfortunately, we aren't going to get the rain we would need to bring us back up to average rainfall levels.

    "We would need a lot of rain to catch up to where we used to be because we are so far behind," Herrera said. "We are only 36 to 58 percent of normal rainfall levels. Unfortunately, there is no way to tell if any one month is going to turn out to be wet or not."

    Herrera said the two seasons before this one have been on the dry side, so this is the third straight.

    John Boitnott is a web writer out of San Jose who will probably forget his umbrella as usual once the rain starts.