El Nino fueled storm causes flooding, downed trees across Bay Area

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The latest storm to hit the Bay Area really packed a punch, bringing a deluge of heavy rain and flooding to the region and damage from downed trees. (KGO-TV)

The latest storm to hit the Bay Area really packed a punch, bringing a deluge of heavy rain and flooding to the region. The first round of this El Nino fueled storm kicked off early this morning. ABC7 Weather Anchor Spencer Christian says to expect breaks in the rain with showers continuing through the night.

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Saturday will be partly cloudy to mostly sunny, with highs ranging from low 60s at the coast to mid 70s inland.

The National Weather Service has issued a Flash Flood Watch, a Coastal Flood Advisory, and a High Surf Warning for parts of the Bay Area. Click here for details on these weather alerts.

Flooding and downed trees are widespread across the Bay Area as the heavy downpour landed on ground that was already soaked from two previous storms.

In San Francisco, a tree in Lafayette Park toppled over and hit three cars. Officials say the tree wasn't dead or ill and waiting to fall. They say it was perfectly healthy, but just couldn't handle the weather.

"That's the biggest one that has fallen here," said resident Michael Carter. "I have lived across from the park for five years. A tree farther up in the meadow fell, I think it was lightning, but this is a big tree."

The tree hit a Porsche, Jeep, and Volvo that were parked on Washington Street at Gough. But no people were hurt.

And the tree on Washington Street wasn't the only one that fell victim to this rain. A top heavy ficus tree fell on Mission Street between 3rd and 4th streets, landing on Muni bus lines.

"Knocked down a support wire which required us to reroute the buses we couldn't get around it," said Muni transit supervisor William Woon.

Mission Street was closed for a couple of hours. And just as they cleared that scene, crews got a call that a huge branch fell a few blocks away on 11th Street, damaging a few vehicles.

Downspouts were feeling the pressure of the latest storm and could barely keep up with all the rain.

Second Street in Oakland looked more like a lake as relentless pounded the pavement and the approach to the Bay Bridge toll plaza was downright treacherous, with lots of standing water.

Josue Ramirez survived a crash on Highway 101. But his new Nissan did not.

"I spun around like three times," he said.

Ramirez lost control of the vehicle while driving on the wet pavement and crashed into a sidewall.

"A car came in front of me," he said. "And instead of crashing into that car, I tried to slide away. But then I started sliding."

Tow truck drivers are busy, they've seen drivers going too fast, even on flooded out parts Alemany Boulevard.

"Just slow down when it's wet," said Doc Soto with Freeway Service Patrol. "No hurry, you'll get there when you get there."

Sandbags are standing by on Cayuga Avenue in San Francisco's Glen Park. Every household is hoping to keep the rain away.

"Definitely a nervous night for sure," said resident Soemy Sanchez.

PHOTOS: El Nino storms pound the Bay Area

According to Sanchez, her neighborhood has flooded before. It happened 10 years ago when storm drains got overwhelmed. This time, there's better news.

"So far so good," she said. "With the sandbags, they have been holding up. And it hasn't been that bad. So we've been able to survive it the last couple of days."

Heavy rain hit San Jose early Wednesday morning creating a lot of puddles and some pretty dangerous driving conditions.

"Getting over here from home on the highway there was a lot of big puddles, a lot of potential for hydroplaning," said San Jose resident Chris Hall. "So it's bad out there."

After a break in the storm, more rain returned in the daylight and kept the windshield wipers active.

Falling branches created a big back up on northbound Interstate 880 just past Bascom Avenue in San Jose.

A Volkswagen Beetle crashed into one that fell in the roadway, leaving a mess for Caltrans.

Across the street from Levi's Stadium in Santa Clara, the NFL was busy putting tents up to keep things dry.

The stormy weather affected service on San Francisco's historic cable car lines. MTA canceled service, citing the weather conditions and typically low ridership during wet weather. Cable car service was restored late Wednesday afternoon.

The high tide and stormy weather has forced the closure of the Manzanita Park & Ride in Mill Valley; always a trouble spot on days like this. The northbound Highway 1 ramp from Highway 101 is also closed. If you're driving in the area, you're asked to use the pick-up and drop-off point in front of Buckeye Restaurant instead.

ABC7's Live Doppler 7 HD is the most powerful radar in the Bay Area. CLICK HERE to watch this 24-hour live stream from your desktop/mobile and track the weather as it moves through the region. WATCH LIVE DOPPLER 7 HD RADAR

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Related Topics:
weatherflash floodingfloodingtrafficwazecommutingdrivingtransportationmarin countybay areael ninorainstormmudslideSan JoseSan MateoSan FranciscoOaklandSonoma
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