The California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) is alerting the traveling public that the National Weather Service (NWS) is predicting rain and snow in Southern California beginning Tuesday, Nov. 19 through Thursday, Nov. 21. Several inches of snow are predicted for elevations at and above 6,000 feet with heavy periods of rain up to two inches.
Caltrans maintenance crews are preparing Riverside and San Bernardino counties’ state highways for the storm event. Snowplows and other equipment are ready and Caltrans maintenance staff will be working 24/7 during the storm.
Motorists are advised to avoid travel during heavy periods of rain and snow. Chains will be required in mountain areas. Road conditions will be icy in areas that are affected by snow. Remember to bring chains even if it is not snowing due to sudden weather changes.
Winter driving tips can be found at http://dot.ca.gov/cttravel/winter.html. Chain control information can be found at http://dot.ca.gov/cttravel/chain-controls.html.
Mud and debris flows are always possible during heavy rain events. Recent burn areas such as Highway 38 through Forest Falls/Mountain Home Village (Valley Fire), Highway 74 and Highway 243 in Idyllwild and Mountain Center (Cranston Fire), and Highway 74 and I-15 in Corona/Lake Elsinore (Holy Fire) are areas of concern.
Evacuations and road closures may be possible on state and local highways due to flooding or debris flows. Mountain regions typically experience rockfall activity during and after storm events.
Urban freeways and routes are subject to flooding during heavy downpours or extended periods of rain. Avoid hydroplaning and steer clear of flooded highway lanes. Oil and other vehicle fluids can be slippery during rain, so reduce your speed and leave plenty of space between your vehicle and others.
Never try to drive through debris flows, flooded roads or standing water – “Turn Around Don’t Drown.” Do not drive past “Road Closed” signs and always follow commands and instructions from Caltrans personnel, law enforcement and emergency responders.
For emergency information in Riverside County go to https://www.rivcoready.org/ and San Bernardino go to https://www.sbcfire.org/Programs/ReadySetGoFlood.aspx.
For more information regarding weather conditions, go to www.noaa.gov/ or www.ready.gov/severe-weather. Check local media for weather and traffic conditions before you leave.