L.A. County remains dry, most of Southern California avoids Northern California storm system
Los Angeles has been spared a major brush fire or a tornado. The Los Angeles County Water Quality Control Department issued a drought disaster declaration for the first time in two decades. So far, there has been no rainfall and no major fires. The drought has made it impossible for the public to evacuate from their homes. At the same time, many cities and counties in the Central Valley have been forced to release water for firefighting, including the city of Tulare, located in the foothills of the Sierra Nevadas.
But even though there are no new firestorms now, the threat of the storm is not gone. The main risk is that rain may fall, and that rain could trigger another drought. The current drought is the worst since the Great Depression. Los Angeles may experience another wildfire this year.
The Los Angeles County Fire Commission has issued a drought declaration since 2003. The drought has been in place for about four years and Los Angeles has only managed to avoid two major fires. The drought is expected to last through 2019 so the department has stepped up its firefighting activities in the dry summer.
The storm that may develop into a firestorm will be the second such system to form in the United States in two months. In North Carolina, at least one tornado formed in the state. In Oklahoma, thunderstorms on July 4 destroyed numerous homes and killed 11 people.
There has been a rash of storms in the Midwest that have formed into thunderstorms accompanied by strong, damaging winds. The storms are in the wrong hemisphere. In the Southern Plains the storms are accompanied by tornadoes, which have killed dozens of people in Kansas.
The weather models project rainfall across the entire United States. The rainfall can be as little as one inch or as much as ten inches. Much of the rainfall will occur on the coast, but not everywhere. The heaviest rain will fall in the south, and the heaviest rain will have the potential to drench the central valleys. Even though it is rainy, it is not raining as much as in the past several years.