Severe street flooding throughout Stockton was reported Saturday afternoon, prompting road closures and warnings to avoid driving in the city this New Year’s Eve.
The National Weather Service also issued flood warnings and occurrences affecting both San Joaquin and Sacramento counties.
“Heavy rainfall over the past 24 hours is producing significant rises on local rivers,” according to an alert sent out by the weather service just after 1 p.m. “Mormon Slough at (Escalon Bellota Road in Stockton) is rising rapidly and could reach flood stage in the next few hours. Flood stage is forecast to be reached at Benson’s Ferry (near Thornton Road in Lodi) on the Mokelumne River Sunday afternoon.”
Just a few hours later, the weather service said areas of the Cosumnes and Molkelumne rivers, as well as Mormon Slough, had reached “Flood Stage.”
“Along with urban flooding, multiple mainstem rivers are flooding or could flood by tomorrow afternoon,” the San Joaquin County Office of Emergency Services posted on Twitter. “If you live near one of the rivers forecast to reach Flood Stage, keep an eye on the forecast & have a plan in place in case flooding affects you.”
Go here for more information on flood preparedness.
The city of Stockton has also set up free “self-service, self-fill” sandbag bag stations at the field parking lot of Oak Park Little League and the old Van Buskirk Golf Course.
“(Bring) your own shovel,” city officials said.
Stockton officials also say there have been several major street closures in the city due to flooding, including:
- Bianchi Road at El Dorado Avenue
- Robinhood Drive between Pacific and Claremont Avenues
- Hammer Lane Underpass between Lorraine Avenue and Holman Road
- Westbound Trinity Parkway at Eight Mile Road
- Trinity Parkway between Walmart and Cosumnes Drive
The city also shows a partial road closure of March Lane at Claremont Avenue near Dillard’s Department Store.
Stockton Police posted photos on social media Saturday morning of flooding at the Hammer Lane underpass at the railroad tracks just east of Lorraine avenue and another of a car in a flooded area with water halfway up its wheels.
“(Do) not attempt to drive through flooded roadways,” police said. “Always choose a different route to avoid getting stuck.”
Stocktonians are encouraged to call the city’s Municipal Service Center to report any localized street flooding, downed trees or tree limbs that are blocking public areas such as streets, and malfunctioning traffic lights or signals, city spokesperson Connie Cochran said earlier this week. Calls during business hours will go straight to city employees, while after-hour callers should follow voicemail instructions, which will be passed along through Stockton Fire Department dispatch to city personnel.
To reach the Stockton Municipal Service Center call (209) 937-8341.
The flooding comes on the heels of several weather systems that have and continue to move through Northern California this week, the largest of which entered the area Friday and will continue into Saturday night, bringing several inches of rain to northern areas of the San Joaquin Valley in less than a week.
Initially, the region was put on a “flood watch” before the weather service upgraded the notice to a “flood warning” Saturday.
NWS Sacramento is reporting instances of roadway and small stream/creek flooding in the Sacramento and San Joaquin valleys, rock and mudslides in the Sierra Nevada Foothills, and heavy rain and snow prompting closures and chain controls in the Sierra Nevadas.
“This storm has it all (and) it’s making for difficult travel,” the weather service said Saturday afternoon. “If you have to travel today, please use extra caution!”
Stockton opened two warming zones Saturday that will be open Saturday night, where residents will be provided with water and snacks. Two additional centers will open on Sunday evening, with all four being available each night through Jan. 6.
Checkout warming center details below.