Redding, CA is utopia of tranquility, harmony, and acceptance. It is a monolith of society, a treasure of California that must be showcased and emulated by all of its surrounding cities. From sweeping grasslands to the the urban sprawl of the Hilltop, there’s no better city in California to settle into than this proud metropolis. Unfortunately, extreme weather conditions have jeopardized the serene scene that usually befits Redding. Storms of all shapes, severity and volume have deluged all of Shasta County, with Redding taking a huge brunt of the damage and wear. While most of northern California is accustomed to precipitation, the sheer amount of strife inflicted upon this bustling city has the citizens and government scrambling for cover.
Mother nature was definitely not merciful to the city of Redding on Monday, as she unleashed a veritable downpour upon the entire populace. Eight inches of rain was the nature of the order, and the ensuing chaos caused backups and traffic jams on streets and highways alike. The historic I-5 was no exception, suffering from a torrential flood that had drivers scrambling for purchase on the suddenly more liquid than solid freeway. Flooding was so extensive that the San Joaquin River reported a levy breach that warranted partial evacuation of the area. Though conditions in the area eventually stabilized and the flash flood warning put out throughout the area was rescinded, the impact of such a forceful happening could be felt for days on end. Meanwhile in the Sierra, meteorologists predicted an onslaught of snow, a frozen counterpart to the troublesome precipitation that has plagued the county in recent times. Residents of the area are advised to exercise extreme caution when going about all daily activities and errands, for the sake of safety and public security.
While Redding doesn’t always make the news, its sporadic appearances in the national spotlight are always a force to be reckoned with. Residents of the city and sleep secure knowing that though this unpredictable weather system has wreaked much havoc, it has also brought fame.
In recent weeks, parts of California and Nevada saw a lot of flooding causing a number of deaths. Experts have dubbed the weather system, Pineapple Express, which has caused a lot of damage in areas along the river banks. In fact, climatologists did not see such a strong storm in more than a decade. As a result of the flooding, the water also reached areas, which usually remain dry in this season.
Perhaps, one of the most talked about natural calamities is the destruction of the famed Pioneer Cabin Tree, which could not resist high winds and floods. As a result, the thousand year old tree famed for its carved tunnel fell down. According to the latest press release, areas around California received massive rain as much as 4 to 8 inches in some areas forcing waters to reach areas around the national park.
Besides property damage, there were also a number of deaths reported in the local media. The cause of these deaths was directly to the severe rain storm. A women was hit by a falling tree while walking on the road. Similarly, a motorist involved in a crash on Interstate 880 in Fremont. Another motorist was drowned in the flash flood near the Oakland airport.
Videos posted online indicated water damage at the banks of Cosumnes River, southeast of Sacramento; the Napa River near St. Helena; and the south fork of the Yuba River in the Tahoe area. Major news agencies are also covering incidents where pedestrians and motorists are hampered by rising water and mud. As many roads are impassable, thousands of people in California are stuck at their houses without the electricity.
Despite heavy rains, it is also interesting that experts do not see these floods as a reprieve for drought-like conditions in certain areas of California. As such, San Joaquin Valley and the Central Coast remain severely parched. According to Michael Anderson, the state climatologist, location of the flood matter, which means that there will be a lot of areas in the vicinity, which will still not get any water. Without a doubt, such rare conditions should ring alarm bells as this may be yet another sign of the global warming climate conditions, which are often difficult to explain.
In a region typically known for mild weather, the rain and wind have caused significant damage. A powerful storm first rolled in to the San Francisco Bay Area from the Pacific Ocean on Saturday night. For several days, it brought heavy rains and strong gusts. For much of the period, winds remained steady above 20 mph, and gusts reached about 45 mph.
While this precipitation is a great thing for the region that has been battling a drought, the storm damage has given the city of San Francisco numerous problems. About 300 trees have crashed down onto the sidewalks and streets of the city, and an additional 47 have fallen in city parks. It’s likely that dozens of other frees have fallen in backyards, leaving a mess for property owners to deal with.
As they’ve come down, some of the trees have landed on the sidewalks when nobody was around. Others, however, have found themselves on more valuable property. Several cars have been smashed by falling limbs and trunks. Some buildings have also experienced damage.
In Vistacion Valley, a tree took down a power line and a street light in addition to hitting two parked cars. This occurred near a housing complex, and about 16 people have to be evacuated temporarily. Officials were concerned about a possible gas leak, but there was no evidence of any problems.
No major injuries have been reported because of the falling trees. People are fortunate that, so far, only minor injuries have occurred. The clean-up process should hopefully go smoothly, especially once the flooded streets see their waters subside.
California’s marine ecosystems have seen a dramatic decrease in recent years due to El Niño and The Blob. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration said that The Blob, which they discovered in 2013, has been highly disruptive for marine life on the West Coast. The Blob, just like El Niño, is a large area of ocean water that has above average temperatures. As its name implies, The Blob just seemed to hang around and grow about 1,000 miles offshore from Mexico to Alaska. The Blob caused a temperature increase of seven degrees Fahrenheit wherever it was spotted.
Some of the specific changes in marine life that have been noticed in recent years include reports that humpback whales are swimming closer to the shore, sportfish are migrating to southern California, and red crabs are washing up on central California beaches. Marine biologists are trying to figure out ways to restore a sense of balance to these ecosystems that have been thrown out of whack.
Scientists explain that warm temperatures change the wind and currents of the ocean. All of these rapid changes have a negative effect on the natural process of photosynthesis, and thus the food marine animals would eat becomes scarce. Scientists have also said that El Niño and The Blob are tapering off, but the ecosystems they touched are still in a state of disarray. Researchers hope to better understand these massive changes to figure out a way to restore balance to the West Coast’s marine life.