Powerful Storm Threatens California With More Flooding

After several damaging storms swept through the state in recent weeks, residents face another deluge.

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By Shawn Hubler and John Yoon

SACRAMENTO — Rain lashed the Bay Area early Wednesday as Californians braced for another powerful storm, which forecasters said would bring more flooding, landslides and damaging winds just days after another “atmospheric river” drenched the West Coast.

Usually, rainfall amounts like those expected over the next couple of days would not have a significant impact. But the rain over the weekend left the ground across much of California saturated, like a wet sponge, forecasters said, making the state more susceptible to flooding and rapid runoff.

Storm preparations were in full swing across the state. The California National Guard was installing flood dams and sandbags in Sacramento, and several parks across Northern California were closed because of the threat that strong wind gusts would topple trees.

In flood-prone San Mateo County, south of San Francisco, many students were asked to head home early on Wednesday and not to return to school on Thursday. Both South San Francisco Unified School District and San Mateo Union High School District canceled Thursday classes because of the severe weather, while suspending after-school activities for Wednesday to reduce the number of people on the roads as the worst of the storm hits.

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