Flooding in California from Hurricane K, dangerous surf forecast

The remnants of Hurricane K are still about a day away from bringing significant rainfall to dry parts of Southern California and southwestern Arizona – but the rainfall could end up being a very good thing.

Forecasters say flash flooding is possible in the area from Friday to Sunday. Southern California’s interior mountains can see up to 5 inches of rain, an exceptional amount.

“The outlook for a significant precipitation event across the region is high,” the National Weather Service said said in an online discussion on Thursday.

The remnants of the storm could bring strong winds and dangerous surf conditions to coastal areas of Southern California.

A Category 1 hurricane with sustained winds of 85 mph, K is expected to make landfall on the west-central coast of Baja California, Mexico on Thursday evening. The storm is expected to weaken to a tropical storm on Friday.

Accused At least three deaths in Baja CaliforniaK continues to be a major rain producer.

The storm is expected to drop 6 to 10 inches of rain over much of the peninsula, with local amounts of up to 15 inches. Near the coast, K is expected to trigger large waves and dangerous rip currents, a damaging storm surge, or rising ocean waters over normally dry land.

Tropical storm warnings have been raised along the coast of Baja California, even on its eastern side, located in the Gulf of California. This is because K is a major hurricane; Tropical-storm-force winds (39-plus mph) extend 230 miles from its center, while hurricane-force winds (74-plus mph) extend 35 miles from the center.

Effects on the American Southwest

As it approaches bone-dry Southern California, K is expected to further weaken and meander off the Mexican coast. However, winds from the southwest will drag the Kay’s moisture into the region, bringing cloud cover first. A prolonged, record-breaking heat wave.

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Dry, wet, hot: Sacramento’s extreme trifecta

The remnants of the storm will bring unusual moisture, which will help alleviate drought conditions across Southern California. There are already some thunderstorms associated with Kay The noise began near Riverside, California. Brings isolated heavy rain and lightning.

Although rain is needed, the National Weather Service has warned that the arrival of Kay will not be without its dangers.

“Despite those positives, getting too much rain at once is not a good thing, a characteristic more common in slow-moving tropical storms,” ​​the weather service wrote.

Cyclones move very slowly – making them even more dangerous

Precipitation, a measure of atmospheric moisture, is forecast to exceed 2 inches in parts of Southern California late Friday. That’s five standard deviations below the norm for the region at this time of year, meaning it’s extremely rare.

Flash floods are likely in narrow slot canyons in urbanized areas such as San Diego, Palm Springs, Calif., and Yuma, Ariz., where fires remove vegetation and run off faster than water can soak up. on the ground.

Flood Watch An uptick has been lifted from central Southern California to western Arizona, and the weather service has placed a large portion of Southern California and an increasing portion of southwestern Arizona in a slight to moderate risk zone for flash flooding Friday through Saturday morning.

More than 2 inches of rain is possible in the zone covered by the flood watch, with 4 or 5 inches possible on the eastern slopes of the mountains, with easterly winds intensifying the precipitation.

In San Diego, an inch or less of rain is expected, mostly Friday through Saturday morning. But being on the beach brings a unique danger. The Weather Service issued a warning for dangerous currents and surf of 3 to 6 feet, with gusts of up to 40 mph possible.

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In Los Angeles, the weather service is predicting 0.25 to 0.75 inches of rain, with 1 to 2 inches in the mountains east of it, mostly Friday night into Saturday.

Some useful rain may reach as far north as the southern San Joaquin Valley before precipitation gradually tapers off Sunday.

Although K is nowhere near landfall in California, it will still bring strong winds Friday that will increase local fire danger. Winds could exceed 70 mph in the Laguna Mountains east of San Diego, which could help feed any flames.

Thunderstorms can bring dangerous cloud-to-ground lightning that could ignite wildfires in the region — though rain from the Cay will help extinguish some of them.

K is not the first tropical system to affect California, but such events are extremely rare in the state. They usually form from the remnants of tropical storms and hurricanes, rather than a direct hit like Kay.

No named system has made landfall in California, although an unnamed storm in 1939 crossed the shore Around Long Beach, bring tropical storm conditions.

California’s most notable encounter with a tropical system was in 1976, when a tropical storm, formerly an offshore hurricane, entered south-central California from Mexico. Kathleen unleashed Maximum rainfall is about 15 inches, A state registration. caused a storm Ocotillo, California was blamed for the severe damage and 12 deaths In America.

Jason Samenow contributed to this report.

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