Heavy rains flood Putah Creek Nature trail, more storms on the way

Railroad Avenue flooded at the Grant Avenue intersection into the majority of the lane. Flooding continued down most of the road toward Esparto. (Crystal Apilado/Winters Express)

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On Monday, part of the Putah Creek Nature Park trail was underwater as the creek waters rose, and multiple rural roads across Yolo and Solano Counties remained closed due to flooding from the downpour of rain over.

At 9 a.m. on Monday, local weatherman Joe Bristow reported to the Express that the to-date rainfall total of 17.30 inches had surpassed the seasonal rainfall total of 17.09 inches.

As of Tuesday afternoon at 2:30 p.m., Lake Berryessa was at 403.11 feet and a little over 88 percent capacity. The lake spills at 440 feet, according to the Solano County Water Agency. Lake Berryessa News reported the lake level is 36.9 feet below the Glory Hole — the highest it’s been since last July.

The Solano Irrigation District reported the Putah Creek flow rate was at 400 cfs (Cubic Feet per Second) as of Tuesday morning.

While the City of Winters experienced some usual flooded areas and plugged drains during the first wave of storms, City Manager Kathleen Salguero Trepa urged residents to remain cautious as more storm systems are expected to pass through the area over the next week and a half.

“The soil is so saturated, please help monitor trees closely for signs of uplift, unusual leaning, etc,” Trepa said in her
Jan. 6 City Manager update.

Trepa noted a few trees had become unearthed during the storm system from New Year’s Eve.

The storm system over the weekend prompted Yolo County to issue a local emergency proclamation on Wednesday, Jan. 4.

The winter storm brought strong winds and gusts from 45 to 60 mph and heavy rainfall through the weekend.

Trepa said residents can report safety concerns on public property or in the right of way based on the situation at hand:

  • Call 911 for emergencies that are an immediate threat to life or property.
  • For non-emergency incidents with no immediate threat, call City Hall at 530-795-4910 and Public Works staff will address them.
  • For critical situations that need to be addressed in a timely manner (like downed limbs, plugged drains), Call City Hall during regular business hours or the Winters Police Department dispatch at 530-795-4561 if after 5 p.m.

Sandbag materials are still available at the end of East Street toward Grant Avenue (between the City Corpyard and Yolo Federal Credit Union buildings). Residents should consider bringing their own shovels to create sandbags.

Public safety officials shared the following instructions on filling and using sandbags:

  1. Fill the provided sandbags one-half to two-thirds full.
  2. Tie the filled sandbag toward the top to transport them.
  3. Fold over the top of the sandbag. The fold should be on the bottom of the bag when placing them around a property.

After each row of sandbags, tamp down the wall by walking along the layer. To build rows, stagger the sandbags similar to how bricks are layered.

Motorists are encouraged to avoid driving through flooded areas.

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