By Associated Press - Sunday, January 8, 2017

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) - The Latest on winter storms in California and Nevada (all times local):

8 p.m.

Officials say two major highways across the Sierra Nevada have been partially closed because of mudslides.

The California Highway Patrol’s Truckee office says all westbound lanes of Interstate 80 near Donner Lake Road in Donner Lake have been closed indefinitely because of a large mudslide Sunday evening. It says it’s unclear when the highway will reopen and that the clean-up will take hours.

The California Department of Transportation says the westbound lanes of Highway 50 near Kyburz are also blocked by a mudslide. It’s not clear when that highway is expected to reopen.


6:30 p.m.

Forecasters say a massive winter storm pounding Northern California will begin tapering off late Sunday, but another storm is expected in the area by Monday night.

Toppled trees crashed against cars and homes or blocked roads Sunday in the San Francisco Bay area, and officials rescued stranded motorists from cars stuck on flooded roads. A giant tree fell across the southbound lanes of Interstate 230 in Hillsborough, injuring one driver who couldn’t brake in time and drove into the tree.

There were mudslides and flooding throughout Northern California that led to road closures Sunday, especially in the North Bay, one of the areas hardest hit and where the Napa River jumped its banks.

Farther north, the U.S. 395 highway was temporarily closed in both directions in Mono County because of flooding.

Authorities were watching rising water levels of several rivers, including the Cosumnes, Truckee, Merced, American and Russian.

At the Santa Cruz Diner in downtown Santa Cruz customers kept the crew relatively busy.

Manager Garin Peck says the restaurant was quiet Saturday night because a lot of people expected the storm to be a lot bigger and stayed home. He says Sunday was a typical day for the diner near the San Lorenzo River.


5 p.m.

A winter storm pummeling Northern California with heavy rain and gusty winds is uprooting trees, delaying flights and causing road closures and traffic chaos.

Toppled trees crashed against cars and homes or blocked roads Sunday in the San Francisco Bay Area as the first of several storms forecast for this week moved into Northern California.

Earlier Sunday, a homeless man was rescued after being pinned by a toppled tree in Golden Gate park. On Saturday, a woman talking a walk in a San Ramon golf course was killed after a falling tree struck her. Officials say winds with gusts of up to 60 mph have uprooted dozens of trees.

San Francisco Airport is reporting delays of more than four hours because of the storm.

At least two fatal accidents possibly linked to the storm were reported in the East Bay Sunday, including a man whose taxicab plunged into the estuary near Oakland International Airport.

The San Francisco Chronicle reports the other crash victim died on northbound Interstate 880 in Fremont.


3:30 p.m.

Hundreds of homes have been evacuated in Reno as much of the Sierra’s eastern front braces for the worst flooding in a decade.

Emergency officials say residents voluntarily evacuated a total of 400 homes affecting about 1,300 residents in a south Reno neighborhood Sunday as the Truckee River began to leave its banks and drainage ditches started to overflow south of Interstate 80.

Many area roads have been closed, but no injuries have been reported.

The National Weather Service says the storm that has already dropped several inches of rain in the area is tracking pretty much as they expected.

Truckee River flows should peak about 2 feet above flood stage in downtown Reno by Sunday evening.

They are forecast to crest about 6 feet above flood stage Monday morning in neighboring Sparks, where several feet of water is expected to flood an industrial area where 25,000 people work.

Schools are closed throughout the Reno-Sparks area on Monday. Authorities say they expect Reno-Tahoe International Airport to remain open.

The flood warning continues into Tuesday.


12:15 p.m.

Stranded motorists were pulled from cars stuck on flooded roads as heavy rains from a massive winter storm moved into Northern California.

Authorities reported rescues in Marin and Sonoma counties, including an operation along U.S. 101 where several people were plucked from submerged vehicles. No injuries were reported.

Officials urged residents to avoid driving through standing water and to stay off rural roads, where rescues could be difficult.

Crews cleared trees and debris following mudslides caused by steady rain accompanying the system that could dump 15 inches in foothill areas as it gains strength throughout the day. Several feet of snow is expected in the Sierra Nevada.

Rangers at Yosemite National Park have closed all roads leading to the park’s valley floor.

Authorities were watching rising water levels of several rivers, including the Cosumnes, Truckee, Merced, American and Russian.

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