California braces for worst storm in years


In case you haven’t heard, California is bracing for the storm of the century. While many of us in the drought-stricken state have forgotten what its like to see water falling from the sky, emergency crews across California are bracing for impact.

In places like Sacramento, that means sandbags. In southern California, it means taking measures to protect people and property from high surf.

The city of Seal Beach is not only concerned about the rain, but also the high surf. By Friday, waves could reach 7 to 10 feet with occasional sets of up to 12 to 14 feet. This is why a Beach Hazard Statement is in effect through Saturday evening.

The National Weather Service said the storm is "expected to be one of the strongest storms in terms of wind and rain intensity" since ones in October 2009 and January 2008.

An atmospheric river — known as the "Pineapple Express" — will deliver a steady stream of moisture directly from Hawaii to the West Coast starting Wednesday. Meteorologists use the term to describe a long, narrow plume that pipes moisture from the tropics into the USA.