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Northern California weather: Storm comes in with a punch

Northern California weather: Storm comes in with a punch

What's different about this storm?

A blizzard warning has been issued for the Sierra Nevada through Friday morning.

Several accidents were reported in the Sierra Thursday afternoon, including this slide off in white out conditions near Tahoe City, California.

The National Weather Service says the storm will begin affecting the state Wednesday afternoon and persist for days.

Sunshine starts the week, with a mix of rain and snow possible on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday.

PG&E's meteorology team has developed a Storm Outage Prediction Model that incorporates real-time weather forecasts, historic data and system knowledge to accurately show where and when storm impacts will be most severe. So to get to an average March 1 reading, the Sierra Nevada would need 19 more inches of water - or 190 inches of snow - this week. The beaches will see nighttime rain - about half an inch - on Thursday and a high of 60 degrees. A 146 miles per hour (235 kph) gust of wind was recorded Thursday night atop Squaw Valley resort on the north end of Tahoe. This week's storms are colder, driven by frigid air from Western Canada and Alaska, and should bring snow to as low as 1,000 feet in some parts of Northern California.

Sierra: Winter storm warning. Traveling in the mountains will be another matter. A winter storm warning continues there until 10 a.m. Saturday.

The National Weather Service in Reno warned of "dangerous and potentially life threatening blizzard conditions" in the Lake Tahoe area. Periods of moderate to heavy snow at times and could cause limited visibility. Totals will be measured in FEET and mountain travel will become unsafe. By 8 a.m., the rain in Los Angeles is forecasted to be intense. The biggest concern is in the area near Santa Barbara and Montecito, where extremely heavy rain on January 9 over the region burned in the Thomas Fire unleashed a debris flow that killed 21 people.

Evacuation orders affecting up to 30,000 people on the south Santa Barbara County coast were lifted at midmorning.

A significant winter storm is expected across SW Calif.Thursday thru Friday morning. There were no estimates on how many people may have left the area.

The northern communities could see the rain-to-snow transition as early as noon.


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