A Pacific storm has moved into drought-dry California, bringing hopes for much-needed moisture but fears of mudflows on wildfire-scarred hillsides.
Light rain began falling before sunrise Tuesday, but the heaviest downpours are expected later in the day.
Storm watches are posted for a large swath of the Sierra Nevada, where a huge amount of the state’s water supply is normally stored as snowpack. Significant accumulations are predicted but not enough to be a drought buster.
In the Los Angeles area, residents in foothills below burn areas piled sandbags in hopes of keeping debris flows out of homes.
Forecasters say the storm could drop about 1 to 2 inches of rain along the Southern California coast and in valley areas, and 2 to 5 inches in the mountains and foothills.