Share

California Winter Storm Titan: Evacuation Orders Lifted

March 2, 2014

Residents in three California foothill communities headed home Sunday after a powerful storm that threatened to unleash mud on neighborhoods beneath unstable hills scarred by recent wildfires.

With the storm reduced to sprinkles, residents in the Los Angeles County cities of Glendora and Azusa were allowed back into their homes. Monrovia residents were allowed back late Saturday, officials said.

The storm — the largest since 2010 — kept emergency planners and rescue crews busy, but it didn't produce enough rain to pull California out of a crippling drought that has grown to crisis proportions for the state's vast farming industry.

The precipitation will bring the Los Angeles region to about half its normal rainfall for the season, Bill Patzert, a climatologist for the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in La Cañada Flintridge, told the Los Angeles Times.

(MORE: California Flood Alerts)

"This is no drought-buster, but it's a nice, fat down payment" in the water bank, he said.

In downtown Los Angeles, the skies cleared in time for the red carpet arrivals at the Academy Awards, but rescue teams and cleanup crews were still busy.

(MORE: See How Long California's Rain Will Last)

A swift water rescue team plucked four hikers from rising waters in a risky overnight rescue Sunday in Malibu.

The hikers, who were trapped between a high wall and the rising waters in Malibu Creek State Park, were whisked out by helicopter uninjured but cold and exhausted.

In San Diego County, search and rescue teams continued to look for a 55-year-old man whose kayak was found floating upside down in stormy weather at Lake Sutherland Dam in Ramona.

High surf breached a sand berm in Long Beach late Saturday during an usually high tide, said Will Nash, a spokesman for the Long Beach Fire Department. The water caused minor damage in the parking garages and lower levels of about 20 homes there, he said.

As of Saturday evening, the storm had dropped more than 3 inches of rain in downtown Los Angeles, nearly 4.5 inches in Van Nuys and almost 12 inches at Cogswell Dam in the Angeles National Forest, according to the National Weather Service.

(MORE: California's Drought in One Shocking Image)

The storm wasn't all bad news, though.

Ski resorts were delighted with fresh snow that promised to extend their season, and in northern California, the rain boosted a local creek where endangered coho salmon spawn. Rainfall over the last month has helped facilitate the salmon's return to their spawning grounds, said the local water district officials who track their numbers.

"Coho season is wrapping up, and thankfully it's ending with more of a bang than a whimper," Eric Ettlinger, aquatic ecologist with the Marin Municipal Water District told The Marin Independent Journal.

Trash collects along the shore after after a rainstorm in Long Beach, Calif. on Saturday, March 1, 2014. (AP Photo/Ringo H.W. Chiu)

Information from the Associated Press was used in this report


Featured Blogs

63.5°F in Antarctica: Possible Continental Record; 14 Years of Rain in 1 Day in Chile

By Dr. Jeff Masters
March 27, 2015

The warmest temperature ever recorded on the continent of Antarctica may have occurred on Tuesday, March 24, 2015, when the mercury shot up to 63.5°F (17.5°C) at Argentina's Esperanza Base on the northern tip of the Antarctic Peninsula. Prior to this week's remarkable heat wave, the hottest known temperature in Antarctica was the 62.6°F (17.0°C) recorded at Esperanza Base in October 1976.

Possible New Continental Heat Record for Antarctica

By Christopher C. Burt
March 26, 2015

On March 24th Base Esperanza (under Argentinean administration) located near the northern tip of the Antarctic Peninsula reported a temperature of 17.5°C (63.5°F). Although this is the warmest temperature ever measured since weather stations became established on the southern continent, it is complicated by what the very definition of ‘Antarctica’ is. Here’s a brief review.

Devastating Drought Conditions and Annoying People

By Shaun Tanner
February 4, 2015

The drought in California has been pretty devastating and at least some of the people of California seem to be happy about it.

Meteorological images of the year - 2014

By Stu Ostro
December 30, 2014

My 9th annual edition.

2013-14 - An Interesting Winter From A to Z

By Tom Niziol
May 15, 2014

It was a very interesting winter across a good part of the nation from the Rockies through the Plains to the Northeast. Let's break down the most significant winter storms on a month by month basis.

What the 5th IPCC Assessment Doesn't Include

By Angela Fritz
September 27, 2013

Melting permafrost has the potential to release an additional 1.5 trillion tons of carbon into the atmosphere, and could increase our global average temperature by 1.5°F in addition to our day-to-day human emissions. However, this effect is not included in the IPCC report issued Friday morning, which means the estimates of how Earth's climate will change are likely on the conservative side.