Fox News Weather Center

Late-week storm to deliver much-needed rain to California

Topic driven playlist

Beneficial rain will douse California late this week, with the potential for some rain to reach southern portions of the state.

While the rain will be beneficial in terms of the drought, enough rain can fall to cause travel disruptions and localized flash flooding from Thursday to Friday.

According to the latest U.S. Drought Monitor released on Oct. 20, over 40 percent of California is dealing with extreme to exceptional drought.

Prior to the late-week dousing, showers will affect portions of northern and Southern California into Tuesday before dry weather returns for a time.

On Sunday, the city of Victorville received rain for the first time since April 28, picking up 0.11 of an inch.

The bulk of the wet weather will remain focused across the Pacific Northwest into midweek before the storm track shifts farther south during the second half of the week.

From Thursday into Friday, a storm will spread rain inland across northern and central California, according to AccuWeather Senior Meteorologist Matt Rinde.

The heaviest rain is expected to fall across northern and central California, including San Francisco and Sacramento.

The rain may also spread across areas that have largely been missed by the recent Pacific storms, including in Fresno and potentially as far south as Bakersfield and Los Angeles.

"Rainfall amounts will vary widely, but rainfall totals are expected to range between 0.50 and 2 inches," Rinde said. Higher amounts are possible, especially across the Sierra.

Rainfall totals less than half an inch will be most likely across Southern California.

Too much rain could fall in a short amount of time, leading to localized incidents of flash flooding, Rinde stated.

Land that has been burned from wildfires over the summer will be most susceptible to flash flooding and possible mudslides.

Portions of interstates 5, 10, 15, 40 and 80 may be slower than normal for a time from the downpours.

"Any substantial rain in central and Southern California could create slick conditions for travelers as the rain water mixes with the oil residue left behind during the dry summer months," according to AccuWeather Senior Meteorologist Kristina Pydynowski.

This storm will not pack a lot of cold air, so snow levels throughout the event will generally stay above 9,000 feet.

"Only the highest peaks across California will experience snow," Rinde explained.

Beyond Friday, Southern California is expected to dry out for the weekend. However, wet weather may persist for at least part of the weekend across northern and central California as a new storm rolls onshore.