The Pacific Northwest is getting ready for the effects of yet another strong atmospheric river storm after a busy weekend of weather. The first parts of this Pacific storm are expected to hit the area overnight on Monday. It will bring heavy rain, strong winds, and a growing chance of major floods.
As the storm continues, flood alerts have been sent to more than 9 million people, showing how big the upcoming weather event could be. With 2 to 3 inches of rain per hour and a lot of water running off from melting snow, mudslides and avalanches are more likely to happen, especially in hilly areas.
The Cascade Mountains got a lot of snow over the weekend. Since Friday, they’ve gotten between 6 and 15 inches. Heavy rain is coming, which could cause more water to flow into local rivers. The Skagit and Snoqualmie rivers are expected to reach major flood stages late Tuesday night and early Wednesday morning.
People in cities like Seattle and Portland, Oregon, are told to keep a close eye on traffic conditions because there is a higher risk of urban flash flooding that is made worse by already-saturated ground.
There is also a chance of strong winds, which could reach up to 40 mph in places west of the Blue Mountains. These conditions could make it hard to see and make driving difficult.
A lot of atmospheric river events happen in the Pacific Northwest in the fall and winter. The fact that the pattern is still active shows that these weather events are still affecting the area. The Climate Prediction Center says there is an 80% to 90% chance of above-average precipitation in December. This shows that the weather trend is still active. About 30% to 50% of the West Coast’s annual rainfall is caused by atmospheric river events. As the area gets ready for another big weather event, people are being asked to stay aware and take the right safety measures as the weather changes.