Heavy rain causes downed trees, car accidents, closed highways in Bay Area

Image 1 of 8

Heavy rain Wednesday caused downed trees, car accidents, and closed highways throughout the Bay Area.

Two lanes of Highway 17 SB at Laurel Curve remained closed around 1:30 p.m. due to a landslide. 

This comes after the Great Highway in San Francisco was closed in both directions early in the day because of flooding and an accident on the Bay Bridge before sunrise was one of many on the slick roads.

In Santa Rosa, the creek at Willowside Road was 7 feet shy of the 70-foot flood stage. Trees fell throughout the region, including in Menlo Park, Atherton and Sonoma, where crews had to clear the fallen branches and PG&E crews were called to inspect the lines. 

Download the new KTVU Weather App

The National Weather Service also said there is significant risk for flash floods and mudslides across Sonoma County, including the areas that burned in the October 2017 wildfires. Heavy rainfall and localized flooding of rivers and creeks is possible, meteorologists said. By Wednesday morning, it had rained a total of  4 inches in Venado, a small town in Sonoma County near Healdsburg, in just 24 hours. 

In Castro Valley, a water main broke on Somerset Avenue, causing a major sink hole. Video provided by the Alameda County firefighters showed an SUV getting stuck in the flooded waters.  

San Francisco International Airport reported 70 cancelations and 35 delays by about 9 a.m. because of the rain. 

The storm system is being caused by an "atmospheric river," expected to last through Thursday morning. 

"It's going to be wet, rainy and pretty miserable," said KTVU meteorologist Rosemary Orozco, adding that the stormy weather will likely last through Thursday morning.

Meanwhile, wet and windy conditions have caused 138 flights to be canceled at San Francisco International Airport as of the afternoon hours.

According to airport duty manager Chris Morgan, in addition to the cancellations, 327 flights have been delayed.

Morgan added that despite the cancellations and delays, the airport hasn't experienced any major issues, such as blocked roadways or heavy puddles.

Along with the rain, meteorologists also are predicting high winds, which have the potential to knock out power.


For a list of Bay Area sandbag locations, click here.