RIVERSIDE (CNS) – The Inland Empire will be in the grip of another winter storm packing heavy rain and gusty winds, arriving Tuesday, with flash flooding possible in some locations, according to the National Weather Service.
“A trough of low pressure with an associated atmospheric river will bring widespread precipitation, along with gusty westerly winds, in the mountains and deserts, beginning Tuesday and going through Wednesday,” NWS officials said. “Rain is expected to spread across the area Tuesday and Tuesday night, then decrease from the northwest Wednesday afternoon and evening.”
The inclement weather is in line with a pattern that has produced rain and snow across the region for the past month, almost weekly.
Parts of the IE were drenched on Friday as a Pacific trough unloaded its energy before rotating eastward.
The Weather Service posted a flood watch in connection with the upcoming storm, beginning Tuesday afternoon and continuing until Wednesday afternoon, cautioning that “flooding caused by rain and snowmelt is possible.”
“Excessive runoff may result in flooding of river, creeks, streams and other low-lying flood-prone locations,” the NWS said.
Meteorologists said precipitation in the Riverside metropolitan area will be anywhere from three-quarters of an inch to 1.5 inches over the 24-hour period.
The mountain communities of Idyllwild-Pine Cove and Mountain Center, as well as the San Gorgonio Pass, were specifically referenced in the watch.
“Snow levels will rise above 9,000 feet Tuesday afternoon, then fall to around 6,500 feet Wednesday afternoon,” according to the NWS. “That would mostly limit snowfall to above 7,000 feet and mostly on Wednesday afternoon.”
Mountain communities have been contending with impassable roads and other hazards stemming from the weeks-long storm series. Although most Riverside County communities at higher elevations have dug out, communities in and around the San Bernardino National Forest north of the San Gorgonio Pass continue to deal with weather-related impacts and complications.
Forecasters said that after Wednesday, the region will catch a brief respite before weaker storm systems advance toward Southern California, bringing additional precipitation, most of it scattered and light, into the weekend.
Daytime temperatures in Riverside metro on Tuesday will be 65 degrees, while on Wednesday, the mercury will settle around 60, with lows in the low 50s Tuesday and Wednesday nights.
In the Coachella Valley, temperatures will top out in the mid to upper 70s Tuesday and Wednesday, with lows in the low to mid 50s, while in the Temecula Valley, temps will peak in the mid 60s on Tuesday and the mid 50s on Wednesday, with lows in the mid to upper 40s, according to the NWS.
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