Rain brings more flooding, downed trees and accidents to SLO County roads

Rain continued to pour across the Central Coast on Tuesday, snarling traffic with spun-out cars and floodwaters, toppling trees and filling one local lake to capacity.

In Templeton, heavy rains temporarily flooded Vineyard Drive near Hidden Valley Road during the early afternoon, and the California Highway Patrol responded to multiple reports of downed trees.

In Cambria, Santa Rosa Creek Road at Curti Creek Road was closed Tuesday morning because of a downed tree, and later, the CHP reported a rockslide blocking the eastbound lane of Burton Drive near Village Lane.

In Atascadero, a large oak tree fell onto the road at Carmel Road and El Camino Real, pulling down power lines.

And in the early afternoon near the base of the Cuesta Grade, the CHP reported rocks sliding into the merging lane of southbound Highway 101 just south of Old Stage Coach Road.

Throughout the day, CHP officers responded to multiple reports of vehicles spinning out on rain-slick Highway 101.

A lake landmark

In the North County, Atascadero Lake reached full capacity for the first time in seven years on Tuesday, spilling into the overflow channel that feeds into Atascadero Creek.

In the past month alone, the lake has risen about 4 feet, said Terrie Banish, Atascadero’s deputy city manager of outreach, events and promotions.

“Last year, we were bone dry,” Banish said.

Banish said paddleboats will be out on the lake starting March 1 and the city is excited for the annual LakeFest event in May, which they expect will go well.

“It’s looking good out on the lake,” she said.

Rainfall totals

Across the region, total rainfall for the 24-hour period ending at 5 p.m. Tuesday ranged from as little as a tenth of an inch in northern Santa Barbara County to almost 4 inches at Rocky Butte, PG&E meteorologist John Lindsey said.

In San Luis Obispo, 1.08 inches fell at Cal Poly, a sizable difference from the 0.33 inches recorded at the San Luis Obispo County Regional Airport.

The Paso Robles Airport reported 0.62 inches, while 1.54 inches were recorded in southern Atascadero. Cambria received 0.83 inches, Morro Bay got 0.74 inches and Los Osos collected 0.44 inches.

In the South County, Arroyo Grande recorded 0.35 inches, and 0.95 inches fell in eastern Nipomo.

More rain coming

Looking ahead, the Central Coast will receive a reprieve from Wednesday afternoon until Thursday afternoon.

A cold front moving into the Central Coast on Thursday night will bring moderate to heavy rain and winds blowing from 13 to 24 mph. Total rain from that storm is forecast to range between 1.5 and 2 inches, Lindsey said.

Saturday will be drizzly, but the rain will clear up Sunday, with temperatures predicted to climb into the mid-70s by Monday and Tuesday.

The wet weather is expected to return Feb. 16, Lindsey said.

Gabby Ferreira: 805-781-7858, @Its_GabbyF

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