Flooding concerns along Kings River lead to evacuation warning in Tulare County

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Thursday, March 9, 2023
Flooding concerns along Kings River lead to evacuation warning in Tulare County
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Evacuation warnings are in effect for parts of Tulare County due to the protentional of dangerous floods this weekend.

TULARE COUNTY, Calif. (KFSN) -- Evacuation warnings are in effect for parts of Tulare County due to the protentional of dangerous floods this weekend.

This community of Three Rivers is bracing for almost 6 inches of rain and snow melt that will come rushing down the river.

All of that water could lead to severe and dangerous flooding in Three Rivers and throughout the county.

"California is prone to wild swings. We are coming off the driest three-year spell that we've seen in the state," said UC Merced Climatology Professor John Abatzoglou.

From a drought to record breaking rainfall totals, communities in Tulare County have surpassed heavy storms in the last two months and are bracing for what's to come in the next few days.

Abatzoglou says several areas will experience flooding.

"Partially because soils are incapable of taking up that moisture," explained Abatzoglou.

He says it's not only the several inches of rainfall people should be concerned about but the snow melt from the High Sierra that could come afterward.

"The combination of rain and then falling on snowpack, so rain on snow, is likely going to compound some of the flood hazards, particularly along creeks and rivers and roadways as well," said Abatzoglou.

Recent storms caused severe damage and flooding in areas like Three Rivers, Yettem, Porterville, and homes along the Kings River.

National Weather Service Meteorologist Carlos Molina says with up to 5 inches of rain in some areas.

The aftermath could be the same as before or worse.

"A lot of it will start running off, Three Rivers might start to see dangerous levels and flood and of course once it gets into the valley, there may be isolated flooding on Friday," said Molina.

If you live in an area prone to flooding, evacuation warnings are in place.

The Tulare County Fire Department wants to remind everyone to be prepared with a go-bag, food, and water.

If you need sandbags, multiple county fire stations have them.

You can find a list of sandbag locations by clicking here.