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The second storm in less than three days will continue to affect the northwestern United States into midweek, while the heaviest rain and mountain snow takes aim at Northern California into Thursday.
On Monday, a storm slammed the Northwest with wind gusts in excess of 70 mph, inches of rainfall and even a few waterspouts. One person was killed and another injured as high winds left over 150,000 without power in western Washington, according to the Seattle Times.
On Tuesday, the latest storm produced gusts to 54 mph in Bellingham, Washington, while gusts approached 40 mph in Portland, Oregon.
Winds will trend less severe through Wednesday night across the Northwest. Meanwhile, rain will blast parts of Oregon and Northern California into Thursday.
The fire hose of moisture will take aim progressively farther south into Thursday. By Thursday, the heaviest rain and mountain snow will focus on Northern and Central California, including much of the Sierra Nevada.
Isolated flooding will threaten to block or wash out roads, especially in mountainous areas and on secondary roads.
Travel should be done cautiously. Motorists should never try to traverse a flooded roadway.
Snow levels will lower from north to south through Thursday.
Problems may arise for people venturing over Donner Pass along I-80 due to heavy snow and communities in recent burn scar areas due to runoff from heavy rain.
A burst of heavy snow may create wintry conditions in a flash over Donner Pass on Thursday.
The cold air accompanying this storm will penetrate farther inland and southward than its predecessors and will bring “over a foot of snow in the Olympic Mountains and highest elevations of the Washington and Oregon Cascades,” according to AccuWeather Meteorologist Kyle Elliott.
Before the end of the week, rounds of heavy snow pummeling the Sierras, Bitterroots and northern Rockies could drop over a foot of snow in those areas.
“Portions of I-90 near Snoqualmie Pass are in line for over a half foot of snow, which could make travel slippery and difficult for motorists,” Elliott warned.
A break in the stormy pattern will occur after this system moves out late on Thursday, with relatively dry and calmer weather expected to prevail through at least the first half of the weekend.
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