A series of storm systems lining up across the Pacific Ocean will hit the Southland this week, bringing rain, snow, high winds and increased flood risk to the area beginning late Sunday, according to the National Weather Service.

Between 2 and 3.5 inches of rain are predicted to fall across the coastal and valley areas through Friday, with between 3 and 5 inches falling in the mountains.

That much rain in a short period could bring flooding and debris flows from recent burn areas. Residents in these areas are advised to monitor weather reports and consider preparing sand bags.

The first rain is expected to fall Sunday afternoon or evening, but the NWS warns that a bigger storm will land Tuesday morning and continue throughout the day, which is expected to cause the highest risk of flash flooding.

Wednesday is expected to see another storm, with rainfall decreasing somewhat on Thursday, according to the NWS.

About 2 feet of new snow is forecast for the mountain areas above 6,000 feet this week. Snow levels will generally be between 5,000 and 6,000 feet, but could get as low as 3,500 feet Wednesday through Friday. The snow could cause hazardous driving conditions next week in the mountain areas and across the grapevine.

Coastal areas can expect high surf throughout much of next week and possible flooding, especially during the middle of the week when a large swell arrives, according to the NWS. Western-facing beaches will be particularly vulnerable to flooding on Tuesday and Wednesday.

“The overall pattern that is bringing us these storms is finally looking like what we would expect the El Nino pattern to look like that it so far hasn’t this summer,” said John Dumas, science and operations officer for the NWS.

—City News Service

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