A strong storm system will move from the Pacific into the West Coast late Saturday into Sunday, producing the heaviest amount of precipitation for the region since late October.
The potential impact zone will stretch from Oregon to areas of Southern California. Truckers should expect heavy rain in lower elevations and valleys of the Cascades and Sierra Nevada, heavy snow in higher elevations and strong winds at all locations.
Major cities within this zone include Portland, Oregon, and San Francisco and Sacramento, California. Major interstates in this zone include Interstate 5 in Oregon and California, Interstate 80 in the Sierra Nevada and Interstate 84 along the Oregon-Washington border.
Rainfall totals could exceed 6 inches in some places through early next week, with snowfall totals of up to 4 feet in the tallest peaks. These snows will significantly impact drivers heading over high mountain passes in the Sierra Nevada, including Scott Mountain Pass, Donner Pass and Carson Pass, just to name a few.
Wind gusts will range from 25 to 50 mph, with the strongest gusts in coastal areas and at higher elevations. Visibility will be limited at times due to blinding rain and whiteout conditions. This stormy weather will likely cause disruptions to ground and air transportation and delays at intermodal operations, with locally severe supply chain interruptions.
Major lanes of concern
• Interstate 5 from Seattle to Portland to Sacramento.
• Interstate 80 from Reno, Nevada, to San Francisco.
• Interstate 84 from Portland to The Dalles, Oregon.
• U.S. Highway 101 from Tillamook, Oregon, to San Luis Obispo, California
Other notable weekend weather
Look for thunderstorms Friday afternoon and Friday night from the lower Mississippi Valley to the Ohio Valley. Some of these storms will produce severe straight-line winds of 60-plus mph, as well as tornadoes, which may be strong. Some cities in the potential path include Shreveport, Louisiana; Little Rock, Arkansas; Jackson, Mississippi; Memphis and Nashville, Tennessee; St. Louis; Lexington and Louisville, Kentucky; Evansville and Indianapolis, Indiana; as well as Cincinnati.
Heavy snow and strong winds will continue to spread across the central Plains and Great Lakes on Friday, continuing in the Great Lakes on Saturday. The biggest accumulations will likely pile up from eastern Wyoming to Michigan’s Upper Peninsula.
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