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article imageCalifornia — 'State of emergency' following two weeks of storms

By Karen Graham     Jan 25, 2017 in Environment
Sacramento - Winter storm Leo showed California its warm side as it sped across the state and into the Midwest. The storm left four people dead and tens of millions of dollars in damage, forcing Governor Jerry Brown to declare a state of emergency in 50 counties.
For the past two weeks, the Golden State has been battered relentlessly by winter storms, bringing much-needed snow to the Sierras and plentiful amounts of rainfall to its drought-stricken agricultural lands. But the trio of severe storms this week was almost too much to bear.
Governor Jerry Brown has declared a state of emergency for Sacramento and 49 other counties in the wake of severe flash flooding, mudslides and raging rivers ready to leave their banks. At least four people have died and three are missing as a result of the storms.
LA Co Public Works reports that Governor Brown, in his statement said: “Beginning on January 3, 2017, a storm system resulting from an atmospheric river swept across California, bringing high winds, substantial precipitation, and flooding, which has severely impacted counties throughout the State.”
"The storm damage, by reason of their magnitude, are or are likely to be beyond the control of the services, personnel, equipment, facilities of any single local government and require the combined forces of mutual aid region or regions to combat.”
LA Co Public Works
The declaration, issued late Monday, covers a good portion of Northern California, including Sacramento, El Dorado, Placer, Yolo, Yuba, Sutter, Tehama and Calaveras counties. Only eight counties were not under the declaration. It is estimated the damage will run into the "tens of millions of dollars," reports the Sacramento Bee.
The storms caused severe flooding in portions of rural areas in southern Sacramento County and damaged several highways in the Sierra Nevada's. It has been years since the higher elevations have experienced snowfall as heavy as what has been seen this year. Thousands of homes were without power and trees were knocked down throughout the state.
CBS News Sacramento
According to, the storm system moved into the Midwest, and in Iowa, snowy and icy roads caused one death. In South Dakota, a 90-mile stretch of Interstate 90 from Kadoka to Chamberlain, South Dakota was reopened Wednesday morning after being closed overnight.
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