California storm could bring ‘historic’ rain, forecasters say

A powerful storm roared ashore Sunday in Northern California, flooding highways, toppling trees and causing mud flows in burn areas left bare by wildfires as forecasters predicted record rainfall.

Drenching rain and strong winds accompanied the arrival of an atmospheric river — a long and wide plume of moisture pulled in from the Pacific Ocean that was predicted to move south over the next few days. The weather service’s Sacramento office warned of “potentially historic rain.”

Roughly 165,448 California utility customers were without power Sunday afternoon.

Flooding was reported across the San Francisco Bay Area, closing streets in Berkeley and inundating the Bay Bridge toll plaza in Oakland. By sunrise on Sunday, Mount Tamalpais just north of San Francisco had recorded over 6 inches of rainfall during the previous 12 hours, the National Weather Service tweeted.

The city of San Francisco ordered evacuations on a street where a 100-foot tree threatened to topple.

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