The cold, wet and windy storm moving through the Southland could dump up to 3 inches of rain in some parts. The Southland, which has had far less than its typical 15 inches of precipitation for the past two years, needs the rain, since only about 1.8 inches has fallen since July 1. But it does bring problems, too.
Authorities ordered hundreds of Southern Californians out of their homes as a powerful pre-winter storm threatened to trigger devastating mudslides in an area burned by wildfires just a month ago.
Lt. Jim Tibbetts of the Brea Police Department says hundreds of homes in the Orange County suburb of Yorba Linda were placed under a mandatory evacuation order Monday morning. He didn't know when affected residents might be allowed to return.
More than 100 homes in the Yorba Linda area were destroyed in a wildfire last month.
Across the state, the storm was dropping heavy rain, with snow falling in higher elevations. Traffic was snarled in mountain passes and there were numerous accidents on freeways and surface streets.
The National Weather Service issued a high wind warning, flood watch, gale warning over the ocean and winter storm warning for the mountains for Sunday night. Precipitation totals are expected to range from about .75 inches to 1.5 inches in the coastal and valley areas and up to twice that much in the foothills and mountains.
Another storm is possible Tuesday night and Wednesday, according to the National Weather Service.
Temperatures will remain about 15 degrees below normal through the period.
"Rain will fall, heavy at times through (Monday) morning," according to a Weather Service statement. "Rain will turn to showers in most areas by late morning, but heavy showers are still possible through (Monday) afternoon."
The rain could cause flash floods and debris flows in burn areas, and a flood watch is in effect through late afternoon.
In the mountains, up to two feet of snow is possible, and winds gusting up to 70 mph could affect driving along the Grapevine section of Interstate 5 and in parts of the high desert.
"Heavy rain and snow will combine with strong winds to create very hazardous conditions for persons driving or outdoors in the mountains," according to a Weather Service statement.
Wind gusts up to 70 mph also could occur across the coasts and valleys. Mariners will face strong winds and a hazardous swell, and beachgoers should beware of rip currents, according to the Weather Service.
The storm coincides with high tides that could cause coastal flooding in low-lying areas such as Seal Beach. A coastal flooding advisory was in place through 11 a.m. Monday.