The Latest: Driver ignores signs, drowns in California creek

AP News
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Posted: Feb 21, 2017 5:03 PM
The Latest: Driver ignores signs, drowns in California creek

ORLAND, Calif. (AP) — The Latest on the storms in California (all times local):

2 p.m.

Authorities say a woman who drove into a flooded road in rural Northern California was swept into a creek and drowned inside her car.

Undersheriff Todd James of the Glenn County Sheriff's Office says that on Saturday morning witnesses saw the woman drive around signs blocking the road near Orland.

James tells The Los Angeles Times (http://lat.ms/2kWweLe ) that the car became completely submerged out of view.

Authorities used a helicopter to find the car. Divers later found the woman's body inside.

The undersheriff says the road often floods during stormy weather, prompting its closure.

Authorities identified the woman as Nicole Dufour, a resident of Orland.

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11: 10 a.m.

California rescue workers are evacuating people from a San Jose neighborhood after flood waters from an overflowing creek inundated a residential area.

San Jose Fire Capt. Mitch Matlow says dozens of people are being rescued by crews with boats and rafts in waters that are at least waist-deep.

No injuries have been reported.

People rescued from the area were being rinsed with clean water after they made it to dry land because officials say the flood waters are dirty and could make them sick.

The flood waters were running over garbage and debris and over sewer systems.

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9:30 a.m.

Authorities are warning residents living along the Tuolumne river in Northern California of possible flooding.

Sgt. Anthony Bejaran of the Stanislaus County Sheriff's Office says deputies are knocking on doors Tuesday at three mobile home parks in Modesto to notify people of the risk.

The Los Angeles Times reports (http://lat.ms/2lrnLBe ) that water being released upstream from the Don Pedro Dam spillway is swelling the river.

It's the first time that this has happened in nearly two decades.

Officials say the high river flows are expected to continue for at least four days.

Weather forecasters say more rain is expected to fall in Northern California.

Modesto could get another quarter-inch of rain.

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8:45 a.m.

Fire officials say they have rescued five people from a swollen San Jose creek following robust storms.

San Jose Fire Capt. Mitch Matlow says the department was originally called out Tuesday for reports of 20 to 40 people who were stranded but that number turned out to be inaccurate. He says everyone has been located.

The Mercury News in San Jose reports (http://bayareane.ws/2kHXtOo) the people were apparently part of a homeless encampment along Coyote Creek.

The conditions of the five people rescued were not immediately available.

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8:35 a.m.

Authorities say a portion of Highway 50 in the Sierra is in danger of collapsing after the shoulder gave way following heavy storms.

The California Highway Patrol reports the shoulder of westbound Highway 50, east of Bridal Veil Falls in El Dorado County, collapsed and the No. 2 lane is buckling.

Crews have the No. 1 lane still open as Caltrans works to fix the road failure.

No additional information was released.

Highway 50 has been plagued with issues over the past several weeks as numerous mudslides have blocked the road for days in a row.

The atmospheric river of moisture that has saturated drought-parched ground with drenching storms in recent weeks returned with a vengeance after briefly focusing its fury on Southern California.

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7:10 a.m.

An evacuation order remains in place Tuesday morning though San Joaquin County crews have stabilized a breached levee and at least temporarily halted the leak.

Forecasters say a flash flood warning is in effect.

The levee break along the San Joaquin River prompted an evacuation order Monday for about 500 people living in mainly ranch and farmlands near Manteca.

Manteca resident Dino Warda told television station KCRA that some farmers took their tractors and other equipment to the levee to help shore it up.

Water had been backing up almost to the top of the San Joaquin River levees before the downpour.

The atmospheric river of moisture that has saturated drought-parched ground with drenching storms in recent weeks returned with a vengeance after briefly focusing its fury on Southern California.

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2:35 a.m.

Creeks and rivers topped their banks, hundreds of homes were evacuated and several thousand people found themselves trapped in a rural hamlet as Northern California emerged Tuesday from yet another winter storm.

The atmospheric river of moisture that has saturated drought-parched ground with a series of drenching storms in recent weeks returned with a vengeance to the north on Monday after briefly focusing its fury on Southern California.

The downpours swelled watercourses that already teetered near or above flood levels and left about half of the state under flood, wind and snow advisories.

However, the storm system began to weaken late Monday night and was moving away after dumping 1.86 inches of rain in San Francisco, around 2 inches in much of the Central Valley and more than 7 inches in the mountains above Big Sur, the National Weather Service reported.