1,300 Reno homes evacuated in flooding along Sierra

More than 1,000 homes were evacuated in northern Nevada, and stranded motorists were pulled from cars stuck on flooded Northern California roads as thunderstorms arrived Sunday as part of a massive winter storm that could be the biggest to slam the region in more than a decade. Crews in California cleared trees and debris following mudslides caused by steady rain accompanying the system that could dump 15 inches in the foothills of the Sierra and heavy snow on the mountain tops before it’s expected to move east on Monday. In Nevada, emergency officials voluntarily evacuated a total of 1,300 homes in a south Reno neighborhood Sunday afternoon as the Truckee River began to leave its banks and drainage ditches started to overflow south of U.S. Interstate 80. No injuries had been reported, but high waters forced the closure of numerous area roads, a series of bridges in downtown Reno and a pair of Interstate 80 off-ramps in neighboring Sparks, where the worst flooding is expected to send several feet of water early Monday into an industrial area where 25,000 people work. Bob Elsen of Sparks said he saw plenty of wet weather in his former hometown of Bremerton, Washington, but he didn’t expect it in Nevada’s high desert where only 8 inches of precipitation falls annually on average. “I don’t think I’ve seen this much rain since I moved here six years ago,” Elsen said as he watched the Truckee River’s waters rise Sunday in Sparks. “It’s why I moved… [Read full story]

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