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Second storm dumping rain, snow across NorCal

By John S. Marshall

Associated Press

POSTED:
LAST UPDATED: 11:56 p.m. HST, Dec 23, 2012


SAN FRANCISCO >> Northern Californians slogged through another day of wet and windy weather on Sunday as the second storm of the weekend moved through the region, causing headaches for people driving on freeways and delays for air travelers.

After a bit of a break in the weather Saturday evening, more heavy rain and strong winds hit the region as a slow-moving but more powerful weather system moved through the region Sunday, said National Weather Service forecaster Diana Henderson.

"It (Saturday's storm) didn't hold as much water," Henderson said. "It came, it dumped its rain and it ran," she said. "This one is a little moister and a little slower, so it's taking its time meandering through the Bay Area."

The good news is that rain is expected to taper off by Monday morning, when the forecast calls for a mostly sunny day with highs in the mid-50s.

But with the ground already saturated from the previous rain, there could some flooding of small streams and creeks in Sonoma and Napa Counties, Henderson said.

For holiday travelers, the storm caused delays at the airports and on the freeways through late Sunday.

"We've definitely had our share of crashes but not a significant amount," said California Highway Patrol Sgt. Diana McDermott.

A nine-car pileup in Oakland and fatal crashes in Sonoma and Marin counties were among the traffic accidents caused by speeding drivers on slippery highways, McDermott said.

On the freeways, a high wind advisory was in effect Sunday for three of the four bridges that cross San Francisco Bay. Officials warned people driving campers or hauling trailers to stay off the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge, the San Mateo-Hayward Bridge and the Carquinez Bridge near Vallejo.

Authorities urged passengers flying out of San Francisco International Airport to check with the airlines on the status of their flights.

"It's been one of those weekends," airport duty manager Shannon Wilson said of the delays caused by the bad weather. "The main issues are the low ceilings, the rain and the reduced visibility."

On Interstate 80 through the Sierra, the main route between Sacramento and Reno, Nev., forecasters issued a winter storm warning, saying that heavy snow and strong winds could create whiteout conditions.

"You should avoid traveling in the mountains today," NWS forecaster George Cline told the Sacramento Bee.

For those making the drive, chains were required on vehicles except four-wheel drives with snow tires from the Placer County community of Gold Run to the Nevada state line.

To the north, chains were also required on stretches of Interstate 5 north of Redding, to just south of the Oregon border.






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