Around 85,000 homes, as well as businesses, were left without power across areas around the Los Angeles area on Saturday as the storms continued to batter areas of California and bring snow up to higher elevations, pouring hail and rain on the plains.
Interstate 5, the largest highway that runs north from the city, was closed at the sloping grade that is known as Grapevine, due to the heavy snowfall, and several other southern parts of the freeway close to Los Angeles were closed due to flooding according to officials from the California Department of Transportation said.
It was Northern California, and San Francisco was forecast to experience temperatures of record lows on Saturday. In addition, the National Weather Service warned residents of the capital city of the state of Sacramento to stay off the roads from Monday through Wednesday when snow and rain began to fall again following a brief respite on Saturday.
“Extreme impacts from heavy snow & winds will cause extremely dangerous to impossible driving conditions & likely widespread road closures & infrastructure impacts!” the agency tweeted.
The next storm is expected to arrive on Sunday, is expected to deliver wind gusts 50 miles per hour (80 kph) in the Sacramento Valley, and up to 70 miles an hour in the Sierra Nevada mountains. Yosemite National Park was closed until Wednesday due to the severe winter weather conditions.
A massive low-pressure system originating from the Arctic was the cause of the unusual weather, according to Bryan Jackson, a forecaster at the NWS Weather Prediction Center in College Park, Maryland.
For Southern California, “this is a rare case of a cold, significant storm event,” Jackson declared.
In a sight that should be a delight to numerous Angelenos this Friday morning, snowflakes landed on the Hollywood sign that sits on top of Mount Lee in the hills over the city, which are popular for its warm day and the palm tree.
In the afternoon, scattered showers, as well as isolated thunderstorms, were predicted to bring hail, rain, and a mix of snow and moisture referred to as “graupel” to the area according to the National Weather Service said.
Another storm that devastated regions of the U.S. Plains, Midwest, and Great Lakes regions earlier this week was blown out into the Atlantic on Friday after it passed through New England, the weather service reported. Over 400,000 people who are customers at Detroit DTE Energy remained without power on Saturday according to the Detroit News report.
Before the most recent storm, the majority of California was experiencing an unusually cold, rainy winter, which began with a series of fatal “atmospheric river” storms that caused widespread flooding, smashed trees, and caused mudslides to occur in the state that has been plagued for years by wildfires and drought.