Heavy precipitation has been falling in areas of California that were recently devastated by deadly wildfires. This flooding rainfall has resulted in evacuations in burn scarred areas such as Butte County where the deadly Camp Fire hit this month. Flash floods, debris flows and mudslides are now predicted in areas where deadly wildfires stripped away vegetation. On a positive note these Pacific storms are expected to dampen wildfires and replenish the Sierra Nevada snowpack. This snowpack is an important source of water for California's streams and rivers.
It is sunny in southern California today but recent unusually heavy rainfall led to rock slides, mudslides and flooding in that part of the country. Rainfall of almost 4 inches (101.6 mm) in one day was reported in Long Beach, California. Some highways in the area were flooded due to intense downpours. Rainfall since the fall of 2016 has improved drought conditions over northern California but Southern California has been slower to improve because of the exceptional rainfall deficit in that area.
The West Coast, which has been suffering from a strong drought, is finally seeing some much needed relief as a steady stream of storms and rain pour into the coast from the Pacific. The rains began in Washington and Oregon and have now worked their way down the coast to southern California. The weather pattern responsible for all of the rain is known as the "Pineapple Express." The Pineapple Express is known as an atmospheric river.