Computer models show that predictions of severe atmospheric storm surges in California now look less likely
While Central and Southern California are still expected to be surrounded by another area Weather storm That will arrive on Sunday and last through Tuesday, computer models that initially predicted a catastrophic amount of rain have backed off somewhat.
European computer models indicated Thursday that up to 12 inches of rain could fall early next week in the mountains near Santa Barbara, but newer models backed off a bit, with 7 to 9 inches of rain forecast for the Sierra Madre and San Gabriel. And San Gabriel. Santa Ynez Mountains.
This is a scary map for the Sierra Madres/San Gabriels/Santa Barbara Mountains, where 7 to 9 inches of rain is expected.
A major concern is flooding in these areas Sunday into Monday, when most of this rain will fall.
– Rob Bradley (@WxRobBradley) February 2, 2024
in Message sent to XDaniel Swain, a climate scientist at the University of California, Los Angeles, who held an online briefing with reporters on Friday, noted that European climate models “pulled back slightly from SoCal’s dramatic rainfall forecast yesterday,” but warned that there remains a “widespread risk of flooding.” range/large”. “
The National Weather Service is also continuing to warn residents in the Los Angeles area to prepare for the “potential for devastating, life-threatening flooding” as well as the potential for power outages due to the storm.
Updated timing graphic, now focusing on the late storm system Saturday through Tuesday/Wednesday. Heavy rain is expected with the potential for devastating, life-threatening flooding. Strong winds 🙴 Snow at high altitudes as well. Get ready now! #CAwx pic.twitter.com/WaePYcig47
– NWS Los Angeles (@NWSLosAngeles) February 2, 2024
There is a lot of rain scheduled to fall
Los Angeles typically receives 10 to 15 inches of rain annually, and could see a third of that or more between Sunday and Tuesday.
The area of California that will be hardest hit is the coast between Monterey and Los Angeles, but the Sierra Nevada mountains will be “hit” with up to 4-6 feet of snow, and high winds are also expected, Swain said. It begins Sunday in the Bay Area and extends south to Santa Barbara.
The first of two consecutive storms came ashore in California on Wednesday, setting a new daily rainfall record for Long Beach, which reached 2.45 inches, and Los Angeles, which reached 2.49 inches in a single day.
Severe thunderstorms have accompanied recent weather river events in California, producing torrential downpours such as those that drenched Ventura in December and San Diego in January. The first storm of the week also brought heavy rain, with more than an inch of rain falling in an hour in Long Beach on Wednesday and the same rate in San Francisco on Thursday.
Unlike the first round of moisture, Sunday’s storm is expected to be slow-moving which will dump more rain on already saturated soil. Los Angeles is expected to see up to 5 inches of rain and more in the surrounding mountains.
“This is the kind of rain they can’t stand.” said FOX Meteorologist Britta Merwin. “This is a guaranteed setup for flooding. There’s no way around it. We know it’s going to be bad, and there’s going to be massive impacts.”
Fortunately, forecast models are down slightly from yesterday due to a faster exit of the atmospheric river.
However, rainfall totals in excess of 10.00 inches+ are likely in the SBA, VT, and LA mountains.
People with recent burn scars need to prepare their belongings now. pic.twitter.com/5GNaLrWxPe
– Edgar McGregor (@edgarrmcgregor) February 2, 2024
Why are these storms so volatile?
One reason California saw such extreme weather is because ocean temperatures were “three to five degrees Fahrenheit higher than average,” Swain said.
“Most of the oceans between California and Hawaii have been experiencing a major marine heat wave for months,” Swain noted, adding that “the warmer the ocean surface, the more likely it is to evaporate from it, in general.” The greater the humidity in the lower atmosphere.
Swain said the cause of warmer-than-average ocean temperatures, which leads to more instability in the atmosphere, is “a combination of El Niño and global warming.”