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A storm system arriving during the second half of next week has the potential to bring widespread moderate to heavy rain to Southern California, the National Weather Service says.

Rainfall rates could be high at times, raising the possibility of debris flows in the recent burn areas, as well as mud and rock slides on mountain roads. Significant snow accumulations are possible with the storm, mainly above 5,000 feet.

The biggest storm, the third in a series, is predicted to incorporate an atmospheric river. Atmospheric rivers are a concentrated stream of water vapor in the middle and lower levels of the atmosphere. Because they’re lower in the atmosphere, they tend to be warmer, even when they aren’t a pipeline directly to the tropics.

This atmospheric river will come more from the west, said Eric Boldt, a warning coordination meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Oxnard. “It’s not a direct tropical connection, but [has] above-normal water content that can bring steady moderate rain for many hours.”

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