Los Angeles, California is bracing for “one of the most dramatic weather days in recent memory” as an atmospheric river brings heavy rainfall to the area. The National Weather Service forecasts that the system, already dumping heavy rain across parts of northern and central California, will lead to significant rainfall in Southern California.
Downtown Los Angeles is expected to receive over 6 inches of rain through Tuesday, with surrounding areas potentially seeing anywhere from 5-10 inches. To put this in perspective, the average annual rainfall for Los Angeles is 12.23 inches, meaning that nearly half a year’s worth of rain could fall in the next 48 hours. Combined with the 2.49 inches that fell in the city on February 1, Los Angeles could potentially receive almost a year’s worth of rain in the first week of February alone.
In addition to the heavy rainfall, the system brings concerns of landslides, flash flooding, falling trees, power outages, and high waves. Rising river levels could also contribute to flash flooding and pose a risk of drowning for anyone near the channel area. Furthermore, areas at higher altitudes may be impacted by heavy snow, potentially leading to road closures.
Local officials in Los Angeles are urging residents in affected areas to stay off the roads through at least Monday morning and to heed any evacuation orders. The system’s impact is expected to be significant, and residents are advised to take precautions to ensure their safety and well-being.