California experienced heavy rain and snow brought by a Pacific storm on Wednesday after a particularly dry winter season but also caused a mudslide in a fire-scarred canyon.
A large amount of mud flowed down the Silverado Canyon in the Santa Ana Mountains in Orange County. The incident filled resident yards, trapping some vehicles under the mud.
Officials reported no injuries but said the Orange County Sheriff’s Department told Silverado and two other canyons to evacuate residents as more rain was expected to come to the region.
Authorities issued winter storm warnings in the southern Cascades, down the Sierra Nevada, and the mountains of Southern California. Caltrans advised drivers to double-check their chain controls to ensure their safety on the road.
The weather system was expected to bring showers, downpours, thunderstorms, hail, and low-elevation snow to the area. The California Highway Patrol also escorted Interstate 5 traffic over Tejon Pass in the mountains north of Los Angeles for a brief time amid the storm.
Caltrans reported heavy snow in the east area on Interstate 15 in the high desert. The Mammoth Mountain ski resort in the Eastern Sierra reported seeing 13 inches to 15 inches of new snow, much more than initially anticipated, the Associated Press reported.
The Sierra snowpack is a crucial part of California’s water supply, which only had about half of its average content at the beginning of March. Normally, the water level is highest on April 1.