Storms expected to drench SLO County this week

Badly needed storms are forecast to begin Wednesday and continue into the weekend

newsroom@thetribunenews.comNovember 26, 2012 

Several storms are expected to bring badly needed rain to San Luis Obispo County starting Wednesday and continuing through the weekend.

The storms will arrive as a high-pressure area — which has been sitting off the coast — moves south, said John Lindsey, a PG&E meteorologist based in San Luis Obispo. That high pressure has been blocking storms from coming to the county.

“The eastern Pacific high will shift southward and will open the storm door for the Central Coast,” Lindsey said. “(Monday’s) models and charts are advertising a strong jet stream carving out a series of intense storms in the northeastern Pacific.”

Both Lindsey and the National Weather Service forecast rain to begin falling Wednesday as the first storm arrives — bringing the potential for between a half inch and 1.25 inches along the coast and in San Luis Obispo. Higher elevations of the county could receive up to 2 inches of rain.

Rain will turn to scattered showers Thursday and Friday before a second storm arrives sometime Saturday. Lindsey said it will carry more subtropical moisture than the first storm, and he expects up to 3 inches of rain to fall in lower elevations of the county, while higher spots will receive up to 6 inches.

Lindsey said winds will be strong along the coast during both storms, with gusts blowing up to 46 mph Wednesday and nearly 60 mph Saturday.

Daytime temperatures will remain in the 60s for the rest of the week, while lows will be in the upper 40s to upper 50s.

Any rain would be welcome because San Luis Obispo’s season total through Sunday was
2.09 inches, below the 2.65 normally received by that date. The rain season is July 1 through June 30.

Last season, San Luis Obispo got 14.6 inches of rain — well below the average yearly total of 22.4 inches, based on more than 100 years of record keeping.

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