The Latest: El Nino-driven storm sets rainfall records
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — The latest on the El Nino storms (all times are local):
The El Nino-driven storm has set rainfall records in Southern California.
The National Weather Service says 1.42 inches of rain fell Tuesday at Los Angeles International Airport, beating the 1979 record for the date by a tenth of an inch.
Camarillo’s airport reported nearly an inch of rain, breaking a 1959 record.
Meanwhile, Los Angeles County public works officials say area catch basins captured 400 million gallons of runoff from the storm.
Officials say that’s enough water to supply 9,600 people or fill 606 Olympic-sized swimming pools.
An El Nino-driven storm is shifting out of the Los Angeles area to the east.
The National Weather Service says that between three-quarters and 3 inches of rain have been recorded in parts of Southern California on Tuesday.
In Ventura County, firefighters responded to a call for someone screaming in a wash. When they arrived, fire Capt. Mike Lindbery says a woman believed to be homeless had already been rescued by other homeless people who dispersed immediately afterward.
In Los Angeles, city firefighters rescued a German shepherd who became separated from its owner and got caught in a wash.
In San Diego County, firefighters pulled a body from a creek in the city of Santee. But they say the man clearly had been decomposing for at least a week and that his death was unrelated to the weather.
Another storm is set to roll into the area on Wednesday.
Flash-flood warnings have been issued for areas below three scars in the ground caused by wildfires near foothill communities east of Los Angeles.
The warnings were issued Tuesday as an El Nino-powered storm drenched parts of California.
To the west, the Los Angeles Fire Department says roads through the Sepulveda Basin have been closed because of flooding.
The basin is a large area in the San Fernando Valley that straddles the Los Angeles River and serves as a flood-control facility when the river expands from a trickle to a torrent during storms.
The normally dry basin has golf courses, other recreational facilities and a wildlife refuge. Several major roads cross the basin.
Los Angeles authorities say police are patrolling riverbeds to compel homeless people to leave low-lying areas as a major storm gains strength and rain gets heavier.
Mayor Eric Garcetti said Tuesday that officials have mapped encampments for the first time in order to contact as many transients as possible.
The mayor says that shuttles are available to bring people to shelters and that the city can make space for as many as 6,000 beds.
Fire Chief Ralph Terrazas says swift-water rescue teams are ready to launch, but he hopes they won’t be needed.
Officials don’t want a repeat of September, when authorities rescued a homeless man who scrambled up a tree with his dog when the Los Angeles River quickly grew to a torrent during heavy rains.
Steady and sometimes heavy rain in Southern California is shaking loose rocks and causing flooding on some roadways as an El Nino-powered storm moves through the region.
The city of Malibu says rocks fell Tuesday on the road through Malibu Canyon, damaging four vehicles. The route through the steep Santa Monica Mountains is a heavily traveled commuter route, and the city says drivers should expect delays.
To the northwest, flooding has closed about a mile of beachside Harbor Boulevard in the city of Ventura. Police Cmdr. Tom Higgins says water is about a foot deep.
In Los Angeles, officials say no major roads are closed and fewer than a thousand utility customers lack electricity. Authorities say the Sepulveda Basin — a flood-control area along the Los Angeles River — is filling as expected.
Forecasters say a storm moving into Southern California is moving faster than expected and so far dropping less rain than predicted.
However the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration said early Tuesday that rainfall could still be strong enough to trigger flash flooding and debris flows on fire-scarred hillsides.
Residents of the Silverado Canyon burn area in Orange County and the Solimar burn area in Ventura County have been told they may want to evacuate in advance of the storms, but have not been ordered to do so. A flash-flood watch for wildfire burn areas is in effect through late Wednesday.
The storms are also whipping up large, long-period ocean swells that could generate hazardous breaking waves at west-facing harbors in San Luis Obispo and Ventura counties.
The stronger systems that were predicted starting Tuesday following light rain a day earlier are drenching the San Francisco Bay Area and beyond.
Tuesday’s storm is just the beginning.
At least two more storms are expected to follow on Wednesday and Thursday, possibly bringing as much as 3 inches of rain.
The National Weather Service issued a flash-flood watch for Northern California communities affected by several destructive wildfires last summer and fall.