An atmospheric river that forecasters are billing as the biggest storm of the season is expected to drench Southern California beginning Tuesday night and will bring with it the potential for mud flows and widespread flooding, the National Weather Service said.
The storm, which is fueled by warm, western Pacific waters, will deliver nonstop rain across much of California and provide some relief to areas that have seen a resurgence in drought conditions.
Outside of storms in November and January, California has suffered an abysmal rainy season. State officials say it would take something along the lines of a "March miracle" of heavy rains to rescue the state from its water doldrums.
While it may not amount to a miracle, data show that recent precipitation has improved the state's water supply.
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