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Weather System Packs A Punch


More than two inches of rain fell on the area this past weekend and more of the same is in the forecast.

Starting on Friday, March 11 weather forecasters are calling for four days of steady rain, ranging from nearly two-thirds of an inch of rain on Friday and continuing with varying amounts Saturday, Sunday and Monday. By the end of the series of storms, another three inches of rain could fall in the local area.

“Surprisingly enough, there were no problems we were made aware of,” Escalon Fire Chief Rick Mello said of the last storm. “This is supposed to be the wettest March on recent record so it could be interesting.”

Mello said if there are any flooding issues in the rural area the fire department covers, they can address them with some help.

“The (county) Office of Emergency Services has flood fighting supplies that we could request,” he explained.

Meanwhile, the City of Escalon does have sandbags available for residents if needed; those that want to obtain some prior to the next rain can contact City Hall at 691-7400 for more information.

Mello said while the rain is definitely needed, there are also some inherent dangers.

“There will be more releases into the rivers, so it’s a good time to stay away for now and we will have the (snow) runoff behind that, in April and May, it’s good advice to stay away from fast moving, fast rising water,” Mello said.

Certain locations in the city seem to collect the water more than others, but Mello said the community is “pretty fortunate” in not having to deal with any major flooding issues in recent years.

“We are hopeful the amounts we are getting will help offset the drought,” Mello added. “It will certainly slow the fire season, this will help delay it.”

The Friday forecast currently includes a 100 percent chance of rain, with 40 percent for Saturday, 70 percent on Sunday and 80 percent on Monday.

The region is well above normal for rainfall so far during the season that started July 1, and the next storm system will only add to that total.