San Francisco is bracing for another catastrophic storm that will be the ‘most impactful’ yet after it was deluged with massive flooding and mudslides last week.
As the Pineapple Express – a strong atmospheric storm building in the Pacific Northwest – prepares to slam into California, the state is still reeling from the storm that hit on New Year’s Eve.
‘This will likely be one of the most impactful systems on a widespread scale that this meteorologist has seen in a long while,’ the National Weather Service’s Bay Area office said. ‘This is truly a brutal system that we are looking at and needs to be taken seriously.
‘The impacts will include widespread flooding, roads washing out, hillside collapsing, trees down (potentially full groves), widespread power outages, immediate disruption to commerce, and the worst of all, likely loss of human life.’
An atmospheric storm, known as a Pineapple Express, is 500 miles off the coast of California. It is expected to hit the Pacific Northwest on Wednesday
First responders respond to a call in Tustin of a group of adults got stranded in a submerged vehicle over the weekend. Two people have already died in the storm that took place over New Year’s Eve and more are expected to happen as the new storm rolls in
Fifteen million people are preparing to be effective by the upcoming storm that is expected to hit Wednesday afternoon, all the way from California to Wisconsin.
Every area in the Bay Area is currently under a flood warning until 4pm on Thursday as the massive storm approaches the West Coast.
However, most of the bomb cyclone will happen in the middle of the ocean.
‘In this case, this one is going to bomb out over the open ocean,’ Daniel Swain, a UCLA climate scientist, told the San Francisco Chronicle.
Despite the storm largely taking place 500 miles off the coast, the effects on San Francisco could be devastating after it already suffered devastating flooding over the weekend, nearly 20,000 Californians are still without power and at least two died.
The San Francisco Fire Department said it received ‘double’ the amount of calls it normally receives over the holiday weekend as a storm drenched the drought-ridden state.
‘The San Francisco Fire Department received almost 800 calls for service in a 24-hour period during this last storm – that’s about twice of what we normally receive,’ Chief Jeanine Nicholson said at a press conference on Tuesday. Although she said that the department is ‘prepared for a disaster.’
San Francisco has already experience massive flooding after receiving nearly 5.5 inches of rain over New Year’s Eve
San Francisco is preparing for two to three more inches of rain and could receive wind gusts up to 50mph on top of the flooding it already experienced
Business owners work to waterproof a restaurant ahead of the storm in San Francisco
‘It’s what we do, but we could really use the public’s help,’ she said. ‘Please stay home, and please have your flashlights [ready] and if you have generators, have fuel in them to be able to take care of yourselves and your family and not have to go out in this and then have to call 911.’
She also advised the public to only call 911 for ‘life-threatening emergencies’ and to call 311 with all other concerns.
‘We still have to run all our critical 911 calls, whether that’s a cardiac arrest or a car accident or a fire. And if you add all the flooding issues that we’ve had earlier this week, it can really overtax the system,’ the chief said at a Tuesday press conference. ‘So again, if you have a little bit of flooding in your home, call 311. If someone is having a heart attack, if someone is being swept away by water, call 911.
City Mayor London Breed, who was heavily criticized for ‘woke’ policies last year, also called the intense rainfall and flooding over the weekend ‘unprecedented’ and said more than 8500 sandbags have already been given out to residents.
A man in San Francisco got around on a raft as high water levels prevented him from driving after the storm hit on New Year’s
The tunnel leading to the Golden Gate Bridge was flooding as drivers tried to get home safely over the weekend
The entire Bay Area is under a flood warning and as the storm continues to move east, the Rockies and the Sierra Nevada could get snow
San Francisco is preparing for two to three more inches of rain and could receive wind gusts up to 50mph.
‘I just want to say to the public, please use 911 wisely. We will have a lot of emergencies to respond too,’ Breed said. ‘We want to make sure that 911 is used as a life or death tool only.’
Videos dispersed online have already shown the coastal city heavily hit with flooding, with some residents creating rafts to get around as high flood water dominates the streets.
KRON 4 Meteorologist, John Shrable, shared a video of a man flooding on a white raft through the streets where cars were stranded. Water levels reached more than halfway up the cars after the city received nearly 5.5 inches of rain over New Year’s Eve – narrowly missing the 1994 record of 5.54 inches.
Highways were flooded on Monday, leaving many highway travelers completely stranded as some filmed out their window, with water levels nearly reaching it.
The San Anselmo Creek’s water level was so high it nearly reached the bridge level.
Another driver showed the Golden Gate Bridge tunnel with heavy flooding as scared drivers attempted to push their way through it.
A mudslide also appeared in Bernal Heights in San Francisco (pictured) after the heavy rainfall over the weekend
The area could experience more dangerous mudslides as more rain rolls in
Joey Fortman, a local reporter, was attempting to drive through the tunnel when she filmed a video. She said: ‘No s**t…this is not good. This is kind of scary actually. This is the tunnel on your way to Golden Gate, this is insane.’
A greenery area in Bernal Heights in San Francisco had a small mudslide where a small wooden fence was bench over from the weight of the mud sliding over it as it flooded the roadway. Ben Lomond Park was also heavily flooded.
‘The flooding, the debris flows, the erosion that occurred, the mudslides on the roadways, and this next system could pack an even harder punch,’ Shrable said.
Two people also died in California over the weekend. A person in Sacramento County died in a submerged vehicle, while a 72-year-old man was struck by a fallen tree in a Santa Cruz state park.
Emergency crews in Sacramento also had to rescue residents via helicopter as many roadways and highways closed down due to flooding.
In addition, the Rio Cosumnes Correctional Center had to evacuate all its inmates. All 1,075 inmates were evacuated safely from the facility due to a flood warning. It is unclear when the inmates – who were taken to other facilities – will return.
As the storm continues to move, the Rockies and the Sierra Nevada can get up to two feet of snow by late Monday.