Rain from the Kay began falling Friday as flash flood risks increased in Southern California, including San Diego, and southwestern Arizona, including Yuma.
“Imperial Valley farmers are in the middle of getting their fields ready for planting season, so a half-inch to 1 inch of rain could damage and delay their schedule,” said Robert Schedler, spokesman for the Imperial Irrigation District.
While the damage Kay will leave behind is still uncertain, the storm is expected to leave moderate temperatures in its path as it pushes away from the US West Coast and into the Pacific on Saturday night.
Meanwhile, wildfires continue to ravage northern California as well, while Oregon faces heightened fire danger from a separate weather system bringing similarly strong winds from the east.
High temperatures and rainfall records may fall
As triple-digit temperatures could continue for much of California on Friday, new high records are expected to be set before the Kay’s coolness settles in.
Behind the heat, faster, heavier floods can also rewrite the record books. Between two and 4 inches per 36 hours is expected Friday and Saturday at the Imperial County Airport, which averages 2.38 inches of rain each year. If Imperial receives more than 3 inches of rain, it will record its wettest September this month; Earlier in 1976, the month of September had the highest rainfall.
In Palm Springs, which typically receives 4.61 inches of rain annually, 2 to 4 inches is forecast. Three inches in Palm Springs would add this month to the city’s top three wettest Septembers, where the average September rainfall is 0.24 inches.
Yuma could see 1.5 inches — making 2022 the wettest September since 2009. The city’s average September rainfall is 0.68 inches.
Fires are affecting California and Oregon
Meanwhile, Oregon faces strong winds from the east that will increase fire danger across the state due to a weather system separated from the Cay.
Utilities Pacific Power and Portland General Electric announced earlier shutdowns in some high-risk areas to reduce the risk of fires.
Portland General Electric said in a release that it will be “implemented in a limited, high-risk area to help reduce the risk of wildfires and protect people, property and the environment.” The move could affect about 30,000 customer meters in the Portland and Salem, Oregon area, the utility said.
CNN meteorologists Taylor Ward and Alison Sinzar, and CNN’s Christina Maxouris, Stephanie Elam, Ella Nielsen, Paradise Afsher and Chris Boyd contributed to this report.
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