Bay Area weathers first round of rain

December 18, 2010 5:47:35 PM PST
This storm has not caused as much damage as anticipated, but it is just the beginning of a long wet holiday week.

It rained off and on all day long in Oakland, impacting shoppers on College Avenue, homeowners, and drivers.

The heavy downpour caused flooding on Interstate 880 in Oakland. Caltrans crews started clearing storm drains early Saturday morning. The debris backed up in seven spots near Hegenburger and the problems underground caused a back-up above ground. A total of four lanes were closed for hours.

The rain is making things more challenging than usual everywhere and traffic is not the only concern. Homeowners are worried about leaks and water damage. The city of Oakland is offering up to 20 free sand bags and plastic tarps to residents.

"I'm going to put them around the foundation outside to keep water from going into the basement. Sometimes when it rains really hard, then the basement takes on a leak," Oakland resident James Robinson told ABC7.

The rain is expected to continue all week long with no significant break in sight. It is not the forecast retailers want as the last-minute shopping push before Christmas begins. What is known as "Super Saturday" was a soggy one.

"The rain is definitely affecting things," Dan Merritt at Redhound pet store said. "We're definitely having an increased business, but it isn't what it would be if it were even sort of moderate weather."

"It definitely isn't the best for us, but we're kind of coming to the end of it, so hopefully at the end here, people will still need to go out," said Body Time store manager Natalie Phillips.

Some people told ABC7 it was actually nice to be outside because the malls were packed, although, many of those people were really just window shopping.


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