Power outages, water rescues and earthquake hit California at start of 2021

California is in the midst of a storm system that has seen hazardous travel conditions, power outages, landslides and flooding across the state. As of Sunday afternoon, more than 100,000 people are without power due to the storm, and the Cosumnes Fire Department has had to rescue dozens of people from partially or completely submerged vehicles. Unfortunately, one person is still missing and feared to have been swept off a roadway.

The storm system wasn't the only natural phenomenon occurring in Northern California on New Year's Day. A magnitude 5.4 earthquake near Eureka closed a bridge while crews conducted safety inspections. The storms were the result of an atmospheric river of moisture, and more than 4 feet of snow had accumulated in the high Sierra Nevada, while 5.46 inches of rainfall hit San Francisco on New Year's Eve. In Sacramento, nearly 35,000 people remain without power and Highway 99 remains closed. The Sacramento Bee reported two levee breaches after Sacramento County officials said a levee failure was "imminent" and urged nearby residents to seek higher ground. State Route 211 at Fernbridge is closed as officials assess any structural damage to a bridge from Sunday's earthquake.

Californians must remain vigilant in their efforts to stay safe and remain aware of their local conditions. Officials are warning residents to exercise caution while driving, and to stay alert for any potential flooding and landslide conditions. The state is still in the process of recovering from the storm, and it will take some time to dig out from the weather system.


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