- Associated Press - Thursday, February 16, 2017

LOS ANGELES (AP) - The Latest on California storms (all times local):

2:15 p.m.

Wet weather has returned to California with the first in a new series of rainstorms moving across the northern half of the state while the south awaits a tempest that forecasters say could be the strongest in years if not decades.

Meteorologists say plume of moisture stretching far out over the Pacific is expected to arrive early Friday and last through the day.

The National Weather Service says the storm could be the strongest within the last six years and possibly even as far back as December 2004 or January 1995.


Forecasters say rain and heavy winds are pelting the San Francisco Bay Area in the first of a series of storms that could stretch into next week.

The North Bay was getting hit the hardest with areas in Marin and Napa counties logging up to a full inch of rain. A flood warning and flash flood watch were in effect for Solano County.

The National Weather Service reports Thursday strong winds gusting through the East Bay hills with spots in the Sunol Valley clocking wind speeds at 58 miles per hour.

In Big Sur, the California Highway Patrol has announced the Pfeiffer Canyon Bridge is closed indefinitely after a slide caused by recent rains caused cracks in one of the support columns.

The next system arrives Friday with rain spreading from south to north across the central coast and Bay Area. Forecasters say this will adversely impact the evening commute.

Showers will linger into Saturday morning then mainly dry out through Sunday afternoon. More rain is expected next week.

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