Break in Pacific storms for California to aid mudslide, damage cleanup

By Alex Sosnowski, AccuWeather senior meteorologist
January 21, 2019, 9:47:02 AM EST

A much-needed break from the storms touting inches of rain and feet of snow that commenced in Southern California last Friday will expand to more of the state this week.

The storms have been deadly, disruptive and beneficial at the same time. Mudslides and flash flooding have occurred, while rain has filled reservoirs and streams and banked deep snow in the Sierra Nevada and Cascades for use as water this coming summer.

The upcoming dry weather will allow streams to recede to within their banks and cleanup to accelerate after mudslides and damage.

Drier Pattern West

The dry weather will also give travelers a break from wintry conditions over the mountains, while at the same time, ski resorts can expect business to be booming.

Pacific storm tree damage LA (AP)

Department of Water and Power employees work in the pouring rain to clear a fallen tree from a road in the Hollywood hills in Los Angeles, Thursday, Jan. 17, 2019. The latest in a series of Pacific Ocean storms pounded California with rain and snow Thursday, prompting officials to put communities on alert for mudslides and flooding and making travel treacherous. (AP Photo/Richard Vogel)

Dry weather that overspread Southern California last Friday may last through the week and perhaps the end of the month.

SW Monday Jan 20

The only exception will be for spotty snow and freezing rain over the Ventura and Los Angeles County mountains into midday on Monday. Just enough snow may dip down to cause slippery conditions over the Grapevine along Interstate 5.

Farther north, bouts of rain and mountain snow may target Washington from Tuesday into Wednesday.

Monday NW

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While dry weather has return, some episodes of strong winds are forecast over Southern California.

Northwest winds becoming north may become strong enough to knock over trees and cause problems for high profile vehicles from Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day to Tuesday.

Trees may be more likely to topple due to the excessive rainfall and wet ground.

Gusts early next week over the passes and through the northeast-southwest orientated canyons may reach 50 mph.

"The main effect of the winds will be to dry out the landscape," AccuWeather Meteorologist Maggie Samuhel said. "But since we have gotten so much rain lately, we are not likely to have a big jump in the wildfire risk, at least not right away."

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