The National Weather Service warns of a “bomb cyclone” approaching California

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CNN

Another powerful storm, dubbed a “bomb cyclone,” is barreling down the California coast, and the National Weather Service for the Bay Area is warning residents to take the “really brutal” system seriously.

The system “could cause immediate disruption to trade and, at worst, loss of life,” forecasters said. It follows the latest set of record rainfall that hit the area over the weekend.

Meanwhile, a major winter storm that brought snow and freezing rain to its northern edge — and severe storms and tornadoes to its warmer southern edge — still threatens “the worst weather possible as it heads east.”

California hurricanes are caused by a powerful “atmospheric river” – a long, narrow region in the atmosphere that can transport moisture thousands of miles. Northern California and the Bay Area will see the worst impacts throughout the day Wednesday and Thursday as heavy rain and hurricane-force winds move toward the coast.

The storm intensified into a bomb cyclone on Wednesday after rapidly intensifying while offshore. A bomb cyclone is an area of ​​low pressure that increases by 24 millibars in 24 hours. Millibar is a unit for measuring atmospheric pressure.

See: What is a Bomb Cyclone?

In addition to heavy rain, the wind speed can reach 60-80 m/s.

“If these winds occur, the risk of widespread power outages and property damage will increase significantly,” the San Francisco Weather Service office warned.

“Many hazards are expected, with heavy rain and strong winds expected to be the most widespread impacts. Widespread rainfall amounts of 3 to 6 inches are forecast for the Coast Ranges and northern California, the weather service said.

While these expected rainfall amounts don’t usually have a significant impact, the state has recently experienced heavy rains that have saturated the ground and left it vulnerable to flash floods and landslides, the weather service said.

Over the weekend, Northern California in particular was hit by heavy snow and deadly flooding prompting evacuations and water rescues. This has raised questions about how rainfall will affect California’s drought conditions.

The first snow report of the season in the Sierra Nevada mountains released Tuesday shows current snowpack is well above average for this time of year, according to a statement from the California Department of Water Resources.

The Sierra’s snowpack accounts for about 30 percent of California’s water needs, according to the department.

The snowpack measured at Phillips Station south of Lake Tahoe on Tuesday was 55.5 inches. According to the agency, the snow cover for the state is 174% of the average for that day.

However, experts warn that the drought is far from over, despite the flooding and rain expected in the coming week.

DWR Director Carla Nemeth said in a press release: “The heavy snow in the Sierra is great news, but unfortunately, these same storms are causing flooding in parts of California.”

“This is a prime example of the risk of extreme flooding during a prolonged drought, as California experiences greater swings between wet and dry periods due to climate change.”

And the stormy weather won’t stop anytime soon. More rain is expected over the weekend, although the exact impacts are still unclear.

“The message to send is one of resilience because this is not a ‘one time’ storm,” the San Francisco Weather Service said.

Additionally, more than 30 million people are under some severe threat of severe weather in the South, with a severe storm threat stretching from Florida to southeast Alabama and parts of Georgia and from the East Coast to southeast Virginia.

Gusty winds, large hail and tornadoes are possible as showers and storms move across Georgia and northern Florida.

Cities like Tallahassee, Charlotte, Virginia Beach, Atlanta, Raleigh and Norfolk could see winds and tornadoes. Heavy rains may also cause flooding in southeastern areas.

After deadly flooding in California, the multi-dangerous storm has spawned at least 130 hurricane reports in the past two days as it lashed the central and southern United States as it moved south across the country, leaving a trail of destruction. southeast.

There were at least a dozen reports, about 100 wind and 27 hail reports. Tornado reports included six in Illinois on Tuesday and an EF-1 in Jesseville, Arkansas on Monday. An EF-1 tornado has sustained winds of 86 to 110 mph.

Other tornado reports came from Louisiana, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Georgia and Mississippi.

Police in Montgomery, Alabama, were dispatched to “several locations” in the city overnight in response to “reports of (a) possible tornado damage,” the city said Wednesday. It is not known how many structures were damaged.

A tornado watch covers southeastern parts of Florida north to South Carolina until noon.

The storm also brought heavy rain, with 48-hour rainfall totals ranging from 2 to 4 inches across much of the South. Parts of the Mississippi and Ohio River valleys received up to 6 inches, and isolated areas of eastern Arkansas received up to 10 inches.

In Tennessee, Memphis and Jackson saw record rainfall on Tuesday. Memphis collected 3.84 inches, breaking the previous daily record of 2.13 inches set in 1949. Jackson collected 2.48 inches Tuesday, breaking the previous daily record of 1.69 inches set in 1951.

A very hot and humid air mass over the East Coast and Southeast helped fuel the severe weather. Temperatures soared across the eastern United States on Tuesday, breaking more than 35 daily high temperature records. 81 degrees in Baton Rouge, 77 degrees in Wilmington and 69 degrees in Washington.

Additionally, more than 5 million people are subject to winter weather advisories in the Upper Midwest and Great Lakes, where snow and ice accumulation could affect travel, according to the weather service.

Parts of the Upper Midwest will experience heavy snow Wednesday through Wednesday, while freezing rain and a wintry mix will spread across northern New England by Thursday, the weather service said.

The storm is expected to gradually dissipate on Thursday.

A house damaged by high winds in Arkansas is seen on January 2, 2023.

In addition to reports of tornadoes and high winds, there were also reports of casualties. One of the tornadoes was registered in the city of Jonesboro (Louisiana), where large trees fell.

A tornado damaged several school buildings in Jesseville, Arkansas, as well as several homes in the area, according to the Garland County Sheriff’s Office.

“School was in session at the time, but all students were attended to and no injuries were reported,” the sheriff’s office said in a statement.

Footage also showed downed trees and damaged homes in other parts of Garland County.

Storm damage was also reported Tuesday in Marion, Alabama, where a home appeared to have been moved off its foundation, CNN affiliate WBRC reported.

“The best thing is that my husband and I are alive. Material things can be replaced, but our lives cannot be replaced, and we thank God that we are here,” said station owner Sylvia Hester with her husband near their dilapidated home of two decades.

Damage reports also came in from north Louisiana, where several power towers were damaged in the Haile community in Marion. One of the towers collapsed and several others were damaged, according to the National Weather Service in Shreveport.

In Jackson Parish, Louisiana, residents were told to stay off the roads Monday as severe weather downed trees and power lines and flooded roads.

In addition to the tornado, some communities saw hail and high winds.

Hail was reported in Oklahoma, Texas and Louisiana on Monday and in Mississippi, Louisiana, Illinois and Alabama on Tuesday.

All news on the site does not represent the views of the site, but we automatically submit this news and translate it through software technology on the site rather than a human editor.

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