Northern California December 19, 2016
A Terrifying, Deadly Storm Struck Northern California In 1997 And No One Saw It Coming
The last few years in Northern California have been dry and we are all tired off this drought. We’ve constantly got our fingers crossed for more rain, but it wasn’t always this way in Northern California.This New Years is the 20th anniversary of the 1997 storm and subsequent flood that shook this area to its core.
Heavy rains in Northern and central California during the winter of 1996-1997 resulted in 8 deaths and $1.8 billion in damages, including 23,000 homes and 2,000 businesses damaged or destroyed.
Along I-80, rainfall reached 3.71 inches in Sacramento, 9.57 inches in Auburn, and 29.73 inches in Blue Canyon.
Forty-eight counties in the state were disaster-declared, including all 46 counties in Northern California.
In this photo, a levee breach near Rio Vista flooded neighboring land and destroyed a stretch of the levee road shown.
Three-hundred square miles were flooded, including the Yosemite Valley, which flooded for the first time since 1861-62.
The sign in this photo shows how high water levels were in the valley.
For weeks after the rains stopped, the rivers continued to flow out of their banks and major roads remained impassable due to flood damage and mudslides.
Here's another shot of the iconic Yosemite Valley, which was completely flooded.
Heavy rains in the Northern California area can quickly become dangerous because this area relies on levees that have a history of failing.
This is a photo of a levee in the Sacramento area.
Weaknesses in the levees, like these exposed tree roots, are being constantly monitored to prevent future disasters.
This spot in Grand Island
was discovered during a U.S. Army Corps of Engineers inspection Erosion
throughout the tree's root system leaves it vulnerable to toppling,
potentially leaving a dangerous hole in its place.
This aerial view shows a broken levee under repair on the Feather River near Nicolaus.
Do you remember the terrible flooding of 1997? We can’t believe it happened 20 years ago!