While flooding remains the first and foremost concern with the final storm in the series to pummel California and the Southwest, strong thunderstorms pose additional threats today.
As if Californians and Southwest residents haven't had enough to deal with, locally damaging winds, hail, and perhaps even a handful of waterspouts and tornadoes are all possibilities with today's thunderstorms.
Gusty winds reportedly toppled a 75-foot tree onto a house in Whittier, Calif., around midnight, according to KABC-TV. Trees have also been downed in Newport Beach and Claremont, Calif.
The most common impact, however, with today's thunderstorms will be torrential downpours that exacerbate flooding problems, which have already been a huge issue for the region over the last few days.
The thunderstorm threat will be greatest early today in Southern California before shifting farther east into western Arizona later this afternoon and evening. Portions of interstates 10 and 40 could be affected.
This AP photo taken by Mike Meadows shows lightning from a fast-moving thunderstorm in the San Fernando Valley area of Los Angeles during the early morning Wednesday, Dec. 27, 2006. Dangerous cloud-to-ground lightning like this could strike parts of the Southwest today. If you have any pictures that capture this monstrous series of storms that has been pummeling the region, feel free to post them on our AccuWeather.com Facebook page.
"Epic" is the word AccuWeather.com Western Expert Ken Clark has used to described the series of storms that has been hammering California and the Southwest with feet of rain, and even more feet of snow, since Friday.
The nasty weather will finally clear out west to east tonight into early Thursday, giving the region a couple of days to recover before Christmas. However, the dry break may be a short one for many, with more rain possibly on the way.
Another storm is expected to plow into California over the holiday weekend, bringing rain to northern and central California as early as Christmas Day.
The combination of moisture from Erika and a non-tropical system will drench areas from Florida to the Georgia coast through the middle of the week.
A rapid shutdown of tropical activity and an end to hurricane season in early September is not likely this year, despite a strong El Nino.
Typhoons and building drought will impact more than one billion people in southeastern Asia this fall.
The vast majority of the time through the Labor Day weekend will feature sunshine with unseasonably warm afternoons around New York City.
Fall will make an early debut across the Northwest as October-like chill spreads across the region for the first week of September.
The calendar may be flipping to September but summer is not going anywhere just yet across the Northeast.
Los Angeles, CA (1955)
110 degrees, hottest day ever in September. This mark was tied September 4, 1988.
Milwaukee, WI (1988)
Hottest summer on record. Six days of 100 degrees or greater and 36 days of 90 or above. Average temperature of 73.8 beat the old record of 72.8 set in 1921 and 1955. The normal average tempera- ture for a summer in Milwaukee is 68.3 degrees.
Washington Co., IA (1897)
Hail fell and drifted in piles 6 feet deep in Washington County.