California is bracing for harsher weather this week, with forecasters warning of a “relentless cyclone parade” ahead.
The US state has already suffered a week of torrential downpours and destructive winds that have killed 12 people in 10 days, Governor Gavin Newsom said.
More than 120,000 people have been without power since Monday morning.
The governor warned on Sunday that the most brutal weather is expected in the next 48 hours.
“We expect the worst is yet to come,” Governor Newsom told a news conference. “Don’t put fate to the test.”
This new round of severe weather will bring torrential rains on already flooded rivers, damaging winds that can topple trees and power lines, and heavy snowfall across northeastern California.
The US National Weather Service (NWS) said the heaviest and most widespread rainfall is likely to occur Tuesday morning and afternoon, and issued a flood warning for areas around Los Angeles, including Orange County and the San Bernardino County mountains.
The Sacramento Valley is also under a flood warning. Schools in and around Sacramento canceled classes on Monday in anticipation of the storm and widespread power outages.
In the past week, California has experienced two overlapping weather phenomena – an atmospheric river where an airborne stream of thick moisture rolls in from the ocean, and a bomb cyclone, a storm with a rapid drop in pressure that creates a cyclone effect.
Last week’s storms caused widespread damage across northern California and produced record rainfall.
The storm damaged homes and businesses and killed at least 12 people. Among the victims was a small child who died after a sequoia tree fell on a mobile home in northern California.
A woman who lived in a homeless camp along the Sacramento River was also killed Saturday when a tree branch fell on her tent.
Much of the area affected by the heavy rains was in extreme drought conditions. Last year, California issued limits on how much water residents can use in an effort to conserve its dwindling resources.
Despite the rain, most of the state remains under moderate to extreme drought warnings, according to the US Drought Monitor.
Experts say it would take years of rain to reverse the two-decade long drought that has hit the western United States.