California storm tapers off after drenching rain, heavy snow

Nov 8, 2022, 5:40 PM | Updated: Nov 9, 2022, 4:14 pm
Early morning storm clouds pass over the Encino section of Los Angeles, on Wednesday, Nov. 9, 2022....

Early morning storm clouds pass over the Encino section of Los Angeles, on Wednesday, Nov. 9, 2022. A drenched California emerged Wednesday from a powerful storm that unleashed rain, snow and raging floodwaters. (AP Photo/Richard Vogel)

(AP Photo/Richard Vogel)

              Early morning storm clouds pass over the Encino section of Los Angeles, on Wednesday, Nov. 9, 2022. A drenched California emerged Wednesday from a powerful storm that unleashed rain, snow and raging floodwaters. (AP Photo/Richard Vogel)
            
              Passing storm clouds move over the mountains in Castaic, Calif., on Wednesday, Nov. 9, 2022. A powerful storm pounded California with rain and snow Tuesday, leaving one person dead and two others missing after they were swept away by floodwaters in a canal, while a tornado touched down in Sacramento County. (AP Photo/Richard Vogel)
            
              Passing storm clouds move over Castaic Lake in Castaic, Calif. on Wednesday, Nov. 9, 2022. A powerful storm pounded California with rain and snow Tuesday, leaving one person dead and two others missing after they were swept away by floodwaters in a canal, while a tornado touched down in Sacramento County. (AP Photo/Richard Vogel)
            
              Early morning storm clouds pass over the Encino section of Los Angeles, on Wednesday, Nov. 9, 2022. A drenched California emerged Wednesday from a powerful storm that unleashed rain, snow and raging floodwaters. (AP Photo/Richard Vogel)
            
              People walk through the rain in the Chinatown district of Los Angeles, Monday, Nov. 7, 2022. A new Pacific storm is bringing snow, rain and wind to California. (AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes)
            
              Larry Bernard Smith is protected from the rain as he crosses Foothill Blvd. on his way to get breakfast in Rialto, Calif., on Tuesday, Nov. 8, 2022. The westbound lanes of Foothill Blvd. are closed due to flooding. (Eric Vilchis/The Orange County Register via AP)
            
              A swift water rescue team from the Ontario Fire Dept. rides in a raft on flood waters in a flood control channel in Ontario, Calif. on Tuesday, Nov. 8, 2022. (Watchara Phomicinda/The Orange County Register via AP)
            
              A swift water rescue team from the Ontario Fire Dept. rides in a raft on flood waters in a flood control channel in Ontario, Calif. on Tuesday, Nov. 8, 2022. (Watchara Phomicinda/The Orange County Register via AP)
            
              Firefighters look for people trapped in the rain-swollen Cucamonga wash in Ontario, Calif., on Tuesday, Nov. 8, 2022. (Watchara Phomicinda/The Orange County Register via AP)
            
              A pedestrian carries an umbrella while walking at Civic Center Plaza in San Francisco, Tuesday, Nov. 8, 2022. A major winter storm pounded California on Tuesday, bringing rain and snow to the drought-stricken state along with possible flash flooding in areas recently scarred by wildfires, meteorologists said. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)
            
              People carry umbrellas while walking past a voting sign outside City Hall in San Francisco, Tuesday, Nov. 8, 2022. A major winter storm pounded California on Tuesday, bringing rain and snow to the drought-stricken state along with possible flash flooding in areas recently scarred by wildfires, meteorologists said. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)
            
              In this image taken from video from a Caltrans remote video traffic camera, traffic moves slowly through the snowy conditions along Interstate 80 near Truckee, Calif., Tuesday, Nov. 8, 2022. A major winter storm pounded California on Tuesday, bringing rain and snow to the drought-stricken state along with possible flash flooding in areas recently scarred by wildfires, meteorologists said. (Caltrans via AP)
            
              A pedestrian carries an umbrella while walking at Civic Center Plaza in San Francisco, Tuesday, Nov. 8, 2022. A major winter storm pounded California on Tuesday, bringing rain and snow to the drought-stricken state along with possible flash flooding in areas recently scarred by wildfires, meteorologists said. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)
            
              A business owner covers his merchandise from the rain in the Chinatown district of Los Angeles, Monday, Nov. 7, 2022. A new Pacific storm is bringing snow, rain and wind to California. (AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes)

LOS ANGELES (AP) — A drenched California emerged Wednesday from a powerful multiday storm that unleashed rain, snow and raging floodwaters, leaving one person dead and four others missing.

Lingering showers, mountain snow and gusty winds were tapering off, and the National Weather Service issued overnight frost and freeze advisories due to the cold airmass behind the storm.

The tempest unleashed heavy downpours Tuesday in Southern California, where one person was found dead after runoff surging down a creek channel swept 10 people away in the city of Ontario. Five were rescued and firefighters were searching for four others, Fire Chief Ray Gayk said Wednesday.

“As far as we know, there were homeless people in the storm drains and that’s when they got washed away by the surge of water and they ended up in the actual storm drain system,” Gayk told the Los Angeles Times.

A tornado touched down a few miles outside the town of Galt near Sacramento at 1:40 p.m. Tuesday, according to the National Weather Service. No major damage was reported.

The storm continued to affect travel Wednesday on highways through the Sierra Nevada after heavy snow and whiteout conditions. Chain controls remained in effect and big rigs were restricted altogether on some sections of routes through the towering mountain range.

In the southern Sierra, a helicopter crew retrieved the body of a hiker found on a mountain pass, the Inyo County Sheriff’s Office said Wednesday. The body was discovered Saturday after an earlier storm swept through the area last week.

The potent fall storms are a promising start to California’s wet season, although experts say it will take much more precipitation to reverse the impacts of the state’s historic drought.

UC Berkeley’s Central Sierra Snow Lab reported that this week’s storm dropped 34.3 inches (87 centimeters) of snow by Wednesday, and that the the eight-day total was 54 inches (130.5 cm).

Among Lake Tahoe snow sport resorts, Mt. Rose and Boreal announced plans to open for the season on Friday. The Eastern Sierra resort of Mammoth Mountain, which opened last weekend, reported totals from the departing storm ranged from 49-70 inches (124-178 cm).

Annual snowfall in the Sierra normally provides about a third of the state’s water when it melts. Last year, however, California had powerful storms in October and December but experienced its driest January through April on record.

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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California storm tapers off after drenching rain, heavy snow