Storm system snarls travel for Bay Area drivers, airlines

SAN FRANCISCO (KTVU & BCN) -- A massive weather system caused headaches Thursday afternoon for Bay Area travelers, snarling the afternoon and evening rush hour commutes and prompting delays at area airports.

As of Thursday afternoon, the California Highway Patrol has closed state Highway 1 south of Point Reyes in Marin County tonight due to flooding. The closure, which was announced on social media around 8:15 p.m., is north of Bear Valley Road in the Olema area of unincorporated Marin County.

The CHP also issued a Sig-alert for state Highway 113 in unincorporated Solano County east of Vacaville due to flooding, which has closed the road in both directions this evening.

The Sig-alert was issued for Highway 113 at Fry Road around 6:30 p.m., and there is no estimate for when the roadway will reopen.

Vehicles have reportedly gotten stuck in the water, and at least two tow-trucks have been called to the scene, according to the CHP.  No injuries were reported.

As far as air travel goes, at least 130 inbound and outbound flights at San Francisco International Airport have been canceled as of 8:30 p.m., a spokesperson said. Delays for some flights were between 1 and 4 hours, authorities said. SFO passengers were urged to check with their airline carriers for the most current info about flight schedule changes.

Earlier in the day, most of the flight disruptions were affecting mostly short-haul flights along the West Coast. No cancelations have been reported at the airports in San Jose or Oakland and delays were said to be minimal.

An official said Mineta San Jose International Airport was helping with flights being diverted from SFO because of weather with at least two airplanes landing at San Jose instead of the San Francisco airport.

Meanwhile, the California Highway Patrol was warning motorists to go slow as the afternoon rush hour commute began. Runoff from heavy rainfall was expected to flood highways, streets and underpasses and other low lying areas.

>>>>>For a full list of National Weather Service advisories: Click here

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Drivers were urged to turn around if they encountered flooded roads.

The National Weather Service has forecast up to 4 inches of rain in the North Bay and along coastal mountain ranges today, with up to 1.5 inches elsewhere in the Bay Area. Wind gusts of up to 50 mph may be reported.

Rainfall is expected to be particularly hazardous in areas of Santa Clara and Monterey counties where the Loma and Soberanes fires burned earlier this year. The weather service said heavy rain could result in an increased threat of flash floods, debris flows and mudslides.

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