Weather Service Warns: It's Not Over Yet

Wednesday's relatively light showers are only the beginning of this series of storms, with more "ominous" systems on the way, says the National Weather Service.

UPDATE 7:30 p.m., "The first (storm) has moved through, but expect more serious hydrologic impacts coming soon," said a National Weather Service news release."The lighter than anticipated rain and now clearing skies...is deceptive and not a signal to lower your guard. Although only scattered showers are expected over the next 24 hours or so, a more ominous system is scheduled to arrive Thursday night. Rain will begin in the North Bay and move east and south slowly," according to the release.

UPDATE 3 p.m., Message from the Bay Area Rapid Transit District:

With a series of strong storms heading through the Bay Area, BART has geared up for wet weather and is reminding riders of safety tips. BART maintenance teams have all hands on deck in inclement weather. Some of the challenges can be falling branches from strong winds, which can knock out power or block a trackway, or heavy downpours that create puddling.

"Anytime you have moving parts exposed to the elements in bad weather, it can create problems, but we work hard to be prepared and call in extra staff if needed to deal with weather-related issues," BART Buildings Foreworker Charles Alexander said. "We do everything we can because our priority is on safety and reliability for the riders who count on us."

Riders can do their part by following tips such as:

•  Put umbrellas away in a bag to avoid drips;
•  Use extra caution when walking and be aware of surfaces that could be wet;
•  Pay attention to surroundings; don't be distracted by texting or reading on a mobile device;
•  Leave early and allow extra time to get to your destination; you don't want to have to run to make a train, and there may be weather-related delays; 
•  Choose footwear and outerwear appropriate for weather conditions;
•  Keep paper tickets dry or better yet, use a Clipper card;

If you spot a weather problem area on a train or in a station you can use the intercom to notify the train operator or let the station agent or other personnel know.

Inclement weather can have other impacts on riders, from parking lot visibility to personal security. BART Police has an increased presence inside our stations and parking lots during rainy weather to assist passengers and help keep things safe.  "Parking lots get slick during inclement weather, making it harder for cars to stop quickly," said Deputy Police Chief Benson Fairow.  "Drivers can't see as well in the rain and people often dart in front of cars while running towards shelter.  We advise everyone to slow down and be extra cautious during bad weather."

Fairow also noted that hooded outerwear and umbrellas can reduce a person's ability to see what is going on around them. It’s a good reminder at all times to be aware of your surroundings and keep your belongings such as purses, phones and packages close at hand, to avoid becoming a theft target.

BART appreciates your help in keeping the system running smoothly and safely during inclement weather.

UPDATE 1:55 p.m., Sandbags to guard against flooding are available for free in most East Bay cities. Here is a list of cities offering sandbags with links to more details about getting a hold of the bags:

  • Albany
  • Berkeley
  • Concord
  • Danville
  • Dublin
  • Pleasanton
  • San Ramon
  • Walnut Creek

UPDATE 1 p.m., The weather caused 73 flight cancellations at San Francisco International Airport this morning, an airport duty manager said.
Most of the cancellations -- 36 arrivals and 37 departures -- were short-haul flights heading to and from airports in Orange County, Monterey, Santa Barbara and other West Coast destinations, duty manager Nancie Parker said.
Parker said that as of 11 a.m., other arriving and departing flights were averaging about an hour delay. Earlier this morning, arriving flights were delayed by as long as three and a half hours.

The Federal Aviation Administration has implemented its flow-control program for SFO because of the weather, slowing the rate of arrivals. The program was expected to be in effect throughout the day, Parker said.

Parker said the forecast calls for the stormy weather to continue for several days, but that today and Thursday are expected to have the heaviest rainfall.
The weather has not caused any notable delays at Mineta San Jose and Oakland international airports -- Bay City News Service

UPDATE 12:45 p.m., PG&E is reporting power outages affecting 170 customers in San Lorenzo and 158 customers in Union City.

UPDATE 2 a.m., The first of three storms this week is expected to hit early Wednesday morning, bringing with it threats of floods, power outages and massive traffic headaches.

Wednesday's storm should end by the evening. A second storm will move in Thursday evening and end Friday evening. The last storm will begin after 2 a.m. on Sunday and last until the evening, according to the National Weather Service.

Although the heaviest rainfall, and some possible thunder and lightning, will happen during the storms, rain is expected in-between. Slight chances of rain continue next week.

Coastal areas could get up to 20 inches of rain. "Small stream flooding and mudslides are possible with the heavy rain and strong winds could lead to power outages in some areas," according to the service.

Traffic is also expected to be impacted by the storms. See your local Patch's live traffic map and check back throughout the day for traffic condition updates.

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High temperatures in the East Bay will range between 62 and 64 degrees, and lows will range between 51 and 54 degrees through the weekend. Thunderstorms anticipated for Wednesday could produce winds up to 24 miles per hour.


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