Stay up to date with notifications from The Independent

Notifications can be managed in browser preferences.

As it happenedended1708547654

California battered by mudslides and flooding during three-day storm

The storm triggered several landslides throughout the state

Mike Bedigan,Louise Boyle,Katie Hawkinson
Wednesday 21 February 2024 20:34 GMT
Comments
Floodwaters rush through Montecito, California on Monday afternoon

A brutal storm that battered California is winding down as of Wednesday morning, with heavy rain beginning to subside.

Much of California was on flood watch on Monday and Tuesday as some regions approach ten inches of total rainfall while bracing for floods and landslides.

Road blockages, landslides and toppled trees have already been reported in and around Los Angeles. A massive tree also crashed in a Los Angeles neighbourhood on Monday, damaging parked vehicles and downing power lines.

Officials warned Californians to avoid road travel and prepare for power outages, mud or rock slides and coastal flooding. Portions of the US-101 and Pacific Coast Highway were blocked on Monday as rainfall intensified and floodwaters rushed onto the major roadway.

Meanwhile, Santa Barbara County officials issued evacuation warnings for some waterfront neighbourhoods, which could persist through Wednesday.

Many parts of California are already saturated from the heavy rain after a storm earlier this month caused hundreds of landslides so far.

1708447204

Massive waves hit the coast of California

The National Weather Service is warning Los Angeles residents to stay away from coastlines today as severe thunderstorms cause large, unpredictable waves.

“The WAVES ARE LARGE today over nearly all beaches thanks to a big 10-15 foot long period west swell,” the NWS wrote on X. “These waves are very DANGEROUS. STAY FAR BACK from the waves and OFF THE ROCKS.”

Katie Hawkinson20 February 2024 16:40
1708448464

SEE IT: Swirling storm over California brings more rain, snow today through Wednesday

Katie Hawkinson20 February 2024 17:01
1708449604

WATCH: Entire Bay Area under flood watch

Entire Bay Area under flood watch
Katie Hawkinson20 February 2024 17:20
1708450804

SEE IT: Satellite imagery of ‘gravity waves’ rippling across California as storm blows through the state

Katie Hawkinson20 February 2024 17:40
1708452004

ICYMI: Southern California rainfall total approaches 10 inches in some areas

Sunday through Monday, nearly 10 inches of rain fell in Santa Barbara County, California, according to the National Weather Service. Other nearby counties mostly saw 6-8 inches of rain.

Several Santa Barbara County neighbourhoods are under evacuation warnings as rain continues, bringing threats of flash floods.

Katie Hawkinson20 February 2024 18:00
1708453204

SEE IT: Satellite imagery of ‘firehose of moisture’ over California

Katie Hawkinson20 February 2024 18:20
1708454404

Southwest California shores should prepare for flooding

Southwest coastal communities such as Santa Barbara and Malibu should prepare for flooding today, the National Weather Service said.

This warning comes amid the last forecasted day of heavy rainfall in California. Large breaking waves are hitting several points along the state’s coast, and coastal erosion is posing a danger to nearby structures, officials say.

California residents should avoid coastal areas if possible through Wednesday, officials say
California residents should avoid coastal areas if possible through Wednesday, officials say (National Weather Service)
Katie Hawkinson20 February 2024 18:40
1708455604

What are supercells, the weather phenomena that formed over California?

Supercells formed over California on Monday, worsening an already severe weather situation in the state.

Supercells are storm systems that generate rotating winds and a strong updraft — meaning they can cause both hail and tornadoes in the regions they impact.

However, as of Tuesday morning, no tornadoes appear to have been reported or confirmed in California as a result of this week’s storm.

Katie Hawkinson20 February 2024 19:00
1708456804

IN PICTURES: California flash flooding, high tides as storm rages on

Floodwaters rush down a street in Montecito, California on Monday
Floodwaters rush down a street in Montecito, California on Monday (via REUTERS)
California officials are warning of high waves and coastal erosion on Tuesday
California officials are warning of high waves and coastal erosion on Tuesday (REUTERS)
Floodwaters swell California’s San Ysidro Creek
Floodwaters swell California’s San Ysidro Creek (via REUTERS)
Katie Hawkinson20 February 2024 19:20
1708458004

ICYMI: California residents survey damage caused by historic storms: ‘We were in shock’

During torrential downpours earlier this month, firefighters responded to a heavy debris flow in the Beverly Crest area of Los Angeles, evacuating seven homes.

That same storm left California’s soil over-saturated, increasing the risk of mudslides this week.

Residents told Mike Bedigan they had “not even remotely had anything like this before”.

Read more:

California residents survey damage caused by historic storms: ‘We were in shock’

Firefighters responded to a heavy debris flow in the Beverly Crest area of Los Angeles on Sunday night, evacuating seven homes. Residents tell Mike Bedigan they had ‘not even remotely had anything like this before’

Katie Hawkinson20 February 2024 19:40

Join our commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies

Comments

Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in