News Update!!: El Nino 2016: Needles, CA: Rain, small hail, fires, power outages, and flooding.
The start of El Nino arrived to the Needles, California area on Tuesday, January 5th, 2016 bring cold and wet weather conditions and weather related problems.
ZachNews Photojournalist Zachary A. Lopez was in the El Nino storm reporting on the weather conditions and problems the El Nino Storm was causing.
Rain went from light to steady rainfall, to more heavier and with small hail begin to fall later in the evening.
At around 7:00pm PT, reports of power outages were happening along Needles Highway, including at River Palms Resort and Fenner’s R.V. Park, on the north side of Needles, California.
Kellie McKenzie, Rosie Ramos, and Merrit Townsend alerted ZachNews of the power outage happen in the community.
Later, ZachNews received another report of another power outage by Allison Hewlett and Rylee Wahlstrand in the area west of Bailey Avenue, north of J Street, and south of Needles High School in Needles, California.
ZachNews contacted late Tuesday, January 5th, 2015 the City of Needles’ after hours line and spoke to a representative who said there was told that at least 3 fire, at 3 locations, that caused the power outage.
Later, the San Bernardino County Fire Department said they responded they only knew of 2 fires, but when asked where we’re the fires located, they didn’t want to say where the locations where at of these fires.
On Wednesday, January 6th, 2016, ZachNews received some more information from the City of Needles on 3 fires, the locations of the fires, and what caused the fires.
According to City of Needles, the 3 utility pole fires were located at Cortez, El Monte, and near Southern California Gas Plant along Needles Highway, and was cause by a mixture of rain and bird droppings causing arcing sparks to the utility poles.
Less then 2 hours later, the power was restored to the affected areas.
Roads and highways begin to began to cuddle up with water and in some areas began to flood, including at the K Street Underpass and along Highway 95 going to Nevada.
According to the California Highway Patrol, Highway 95 between Interstate 40 and the Nevada state line is closed due to flooding.
The K Street Underpass, between Front Street and Needles Highway was closed due to flooding from run off.
Motorists had to use the detour of Needles Highway to West Broadway to get around the flooded K Street Underpass.
ZachNews Photojournalist Zachary A. Lopez was with ZachNews fans Allison Hewlett, Rylee Wahlstrand, Mandy Zubiate, and Cheyenne Mello going around the areas of the power outage and to search for flooded areas, and as they arrived to the K Street Underpass, a man in a car was seen entering into the closed underpass and got stuck in the flooded water unable to continue out.
ZachNews Photojournalist and ZachNews fans got out and came to the aid of the driver.
ZachNews Photojournalist checked with the driver, the only person inside the vehicle, and told ZachNews that he was alright.
The driver got out through the window and was helped to safe ground.
Baker Emergency Medical Services, San Bernardino County Fire Department, and San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department arrived at the scene and checked with the driver.
ZachNews wants all motorists to know that if a road, highway, or interstate is flooded, do not drive through the flood; “Turn Around, Don’t Drown” or go around the road barricades; which according to a San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department Deputy, is a misdemeanor.
The San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department Deputy warn the driver and told the driver that next time, not to drive around any road barricades.
The driver’s vehicle was later towed away by A Toe Truck.
The driver and his mother thanked everybody, including ZachNews, for being there at the right time.
The San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department Deputy told ZachNews that south of Needles, California along Highway 95, reports of some trees were blocking the highway and were being removed.
Just across the Colorado River in Arizona, some areas of rocks and flooded on Mohave Valley Highway in Mohave Valley, Arizona were reported and in the Topock, Arizona, mud and debris were reported as well as flooding was seen in the Sacramento Wash.
As more rainy conditions are possible in the afternoon and ZachNews Photojournalist Zachary A. Lopez will be out there again in the El Nino storm reporting on the weather conditions and weather related problems.
ZachNews thanks our fans and news tipsters for helping ZachNews keep our community informed.
** Stay tuned to ZachNews for more news updates with more information on El Nino 2016. **