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Dry pattern may give way to series of storms
Weather service predicts 70% chance of rainfall on Wednesday
While the dry pattern that has dominated the South Valley the past few months may give way to a trio of storms this week, the weather service cautions that people should not expect a lot of rain in Porterville.
The first of at least three storms will push out the fog today and bring rain to the area Wednesday. Two more storms are expected to keep streets wet through the weekend.
“It looks like a change in the pattern,” said meteorologist Jim Bagnall with National Weather Service in Hanford. “Starting Wednesday, we’ve got systems coming through.”
However, he said, the storms now appear to be favoring the northern half of the state and only showers may fall here. All totaled, Porterville may see less than half of an inch of precipitation.
That is not what those who rely on water for the their livelihood, like farmers, want to hear.
Rainfall to date is a sparse 0.27 of an inch in Porterville. Average precipitation by the end of November is 2.17 inches. Success Lake holds less than 5,000 acre feet of water today.
More importantly, there has been almost no snowfall. Most of the Sierra are void of snow and the week’s storms do not hold a lot of promise for the southern Sierra. However, the northern Sierra should see a lot of snow and the north Valley may get a significant amount of rainfall.
Bagnall noted that the snow level will be between 7,000 and 8,000 feet in the local mountains
“It’s a warm storm and that’s keeping the snow level high,” he said.
The forecast is for daytime highs in the mid-60s and nighttime lows in the mid-40s, about what they have been the past few weeks.
The weather service predicts the best chance of rainfall for Porterville will be Wednesday, when there is a 70 percent chance. That falls to a 30-percent chance Wednesday through Friday, then just a 20-percent chance Saturday and a 40-percent chance Sunday. Bagnall said it appears right now that the rainy period will end on Sunday.
He also said there does not appear to be any indications on what the winter will bring.
Calling it a “La Nada,” Bagnall said the conditions are neither an El Nino or La Nina, so it is difficult to get a handle on what the future holds.
“There’s no significant push in either direction,” he said of weather indicators.