(Reuters) – California was bracing on Saturday for another wave of torrential rain as well as heavy snow as a massive storm triggered flooding, mudslides and power outages and killed two people, officials said.
The National Weather Service warned that rain totals could reach 10 inches (25 cm) in parts of southern California and 2 feet (60 cm) of snow in higher areas to the east as the storm continues to roll through the region.
The severe storm has brought California its heaviest rainfall in six years and comes after months of wet weather that has dramatically eased a years-long drought in the key agricultural state.
The rain and melting snowpack also are threatening to undermine a spillway at one of the largest dams in the country. Some 188,000 residents were evacuated from the area earlier this week.
Utility crews were working to restore electricity to more than 78,000 customers affected by power outages throughout the Los Angeles area.
Early on Saturday, an evacuation order remained in effect for 180 homes in Duarte, a city about 20 miles (32 km) east of Los Angeles, because of fears of mudslides.
One man died after he was electrocuted by a downed wire, the Los Angeles Fire Department said, adding that it had responded to 150 reports of downed wires on Friday. Another person was found dead in a submerged vehicle in Victorville, about 100 miles east of Los Angeles, fire officials said on Twitter.
A woman was injured when the car she was in fell into a 20-foot sinkhole in Studio City on Friday night. A second car fell into the sinkhole after the woman was rescued, an ABC affiliate reported.
Local television news also showed video footage of a San Bernardino County fire truck tumbling over the side of a freeway as the road gave out.
“All firefighters confirmed safe. The lane under the fire engine has failed, and the engine has gone over the side,” the San Bernardino County Fire Department said on Twitter.
Amtrak railroad service was suspended for trains between the cities of Oxnard and San Luis Obispo in the central and southern areas of the state due to extreme weather conditions, according to the transportation service’s website.
In higher areas of eastern California and western Nevada, snowfall and wind gusts of up to 50 mph (80 kph) were in the forecast until Saturday night, the National Weather Service said.
“This will make travel hazardous or impossible,” the service said in an advisory.
(Reporting by Brendan O’Brien in Milwaukee Editing by Ed Osmond and Paul Simao)