Storm Drenches Southern California, Shuts Interstate 5

December 30, 2021 7:26 am


Drenching rains fell across a swath of Southern California and snow brought traffic to a halt on a major highway early Thursday as the last in a series of December storms that walloped the state moved through.

The Grapevine section of Interstate 5 high in the mountains north of Los Angeles was shut down due to snow and ice before dawn, the California Highway Patrol said.

The storm brought widespread worries about flooding and debris flows from wildfire burn scars in the region.

Northern California was finally mostly free of storm warnings but chains were required on major highways through the Sierra Nevada due to icy conditions.

Residents in higher foothill and mountain communities were digging out, with reports of major tree and power line damage in places like Foresthill and the Nevada City area, both northeast of Sacramento.

Thousand of residents remained without power, with warnings that some could be without lights and heat for another week.

On the scenic central coast, a 10-mile (16-kilometer) stretch of often-troubled Highway 1 remained closed by a weekend slide in San Luis Obispo County.

Forecasts called for California weather to generally dry out for the New Year’s weekend before more storms next week.

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