flood leaves, 11/26/12

Leaves on Jefferson Street in downtown Fairfield, Monday. Unswept leaves may clog storm drains and contribute to flooding if the area receives heavy rains. (Brad Zweerink/Daily Republic)

Solano County

Solano could see big rain totals

By From page A1 | November 27, 2012

FAIRFIELD — Solano County’s fledgling 2012-13 rain season is kicking into high gear, complete with its first flood warning.

National Weather Service forecasts predict rain beginning Wednesday and continuing periodically in coming days. The amounts should be plentiful.

“We probably have the most significant series of weather systems so far this season coming into Northern California,” Golden West Meteorology owner and Cordelia Villages resident Mike Pechner said Monday. “The jet stream is aimed right at the North Bay.”

One weather model shows Travis Air Force Base receiving more than 4 inches of rain by Dec. 4, Pechner said. That means the nearby hills could see double that amount, he said.

The first system could hit Wednesday morning with periods of heavy rain and gusty winds.

“Kind of a messy commute,” Pechner said.

Distinct systems could also hit Thursday afternoon into Friday and Saturday into Sunday, for three in all. More rain could come during the following week, Pechner said.

The National Weather Service’s Sacramento office issued a flood warning Monday for much of the Sacramento region, including Solano County. Major flooding from larger rivers is unlikely because of low reservoir levels, but urban and small stream flooding is likely, it said.

If these storms hit later in the rain season when the ground is likely to be saturated, the flooding risk would be worse, Pechner said. As it is, the ground is not nearly saturated. Also, high tides in coming days will be below the levels that usually cause flooding problems, he said.

Given all of this, Pechner said that the local risk for creek or stream flooding will be highest with the third storm system this weekend.

Street flooding is another matter. It often occurs during storms at this time of the year because of fallen leaves that block gutters and stop water from going down storm drains.

The Solano County Water Agency maintains a website with local flooding forecasts, using not only National Weather Service information, but also data from a system of local rain and stream gauges. Please go to www.scwa2.com/FloodControl_Forecasts_Info.aspx for the latest predictions.

Pechner said his Cordelia Villages home has received about 3.3 inches of rain this season. The season rainfall total in California is measured from July 1 through June 30. The Fairfield area typically receives about 20 inches of rain for the season.

Reach Barry Eberling at 427-6929, or [email protected] Follow him on Twitter at www.twitter.com/beberlingdr.

Barry Eberling

Barry Eberling

Barry Eberling has been a reporter with the Daily Republic since 1987. He covers Solano County government, transportation, growth and the environment. He received his bachelors of art degree from the University of California, Santa Barbara and his masters degree in journalism from the University of California, Berkeley.

Discussion | 1 comment

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  • Rich GiddensNovember 27, 2012 - 11:20 am

    Thank you for the excellent photo of the leaves that need to be removed by the homeowners and maybe even renters. The NOAA long range forecast showed an equal chance of being being normal or above normal precipitation. That said, I'm pruning and sealing deciduous trees, spraying fungicide and cleaning out gutters in preparation for the storm event. I tried to warn my neighbors that their roof shingles and vent flashings are loose and need to be sealed and nailed down but they care not. I warned them that winter storms around here can have hurricane force winds that can do damage to buildings and cars. Power outages and flooded roads are common but who's listening anyway. Wars and disasters are ''come as you are'' affairs--ready or not!

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