Storms rock Sonoma County and surrounding areas

Sonoma County has been hit with a string of wild storms over the last few weeks. From simple rains, to a light snow falling on its highest point, many have been affected by the weather surge.

Flooding and road closures have been wreaking havoc on commuters causing delays and even some being stranded. With clear skies throughout the this week, it gives many time to finally clean up the aftermath of the storms.

The last of the large storm seemed to make its way into the North Bay Friday and came full force. Flooding in our surrounding areas reached levels to where road closures were needed, leaving many not able to leave their homes.

“The 24-hour rainfall total by Friday evening — at more than an inch in the hills west of Healdsburg and half as much in downtown Santa Rosa,” reported the Press Democrat. “But the accumulated runoff pushed the lower Russian River to a crest of nearly 35 feet early Friday morning in Guerneville. Flood stage is 32 feet in the area.”

The Russian River wasn’t the only body of water that was affected by the downpour of the previous days. There was flooding in Novato that closed westbound Highway 37, along with our main reservoirs reaching their capacity for the entire year.

The storm dumped a tremendous amount of water in our region with some of the highest numbers seen. The Press Democrat stated, “Since Tuesday, the storm has dumped 13.84 inches on the region’s wettest spot, Venado, in the hills west of Healdsburg. The total at Charles M. Schulz-Sonoma County Airport was 5.52 inches.”

Along with the heavy downpour, The North Bay has been having some of the worst winds that our county has ever seen, leaving firefighters bombarded with calls about downed power lines and accidents. Fallen trees have also been a hazard to the community that first responders have had to take care of.

The County of Sonoma issued safety warnings to those who are around such damage, like downed power lines, should never touch them -- even if it is with an object like a stick or a broom -- and be sure to not drive over them.

Students try to stay dry in the rainy weather on Sat. Feb. 16, 2019.

Students try to stay dry in the rainy weather on Sat. Feb. 16, 2019.

According to County of Sonoma website and the County Administrator’s Office, along with the Permits and Resources Management Department, inspectors were sent out on Saturday to assess the damage caused by the storms. The inspectors will be going to areas where flooding damage may have occurred to different property foundations.

“Inspectors may tag damaged properties with colored placards that provide more details on the damage and any related instructions. As always, property owners are advised to obtain permits from Permit Sonoma before repairing or rebuilding flood-damaged structures.”

With a period of high pressure now in the area, we can expect some welcome sunshine over the course of the next week, which will hopefully mitigate any more flood damage for the time being.